I hope your week is going well and you’ve recovered from all the fun we had at the beach! I have seen some pictures floating around Facebook and still need to upload the photos I took, when I do, I will share them around.
This past Sunday while we were on the coast we began our Advent theme: transitions. Christ’s coming into the world marks a serious transition in world history, it shifts the balance of power, it brings the good news to the poor and downtrodden, and it initiates a “new creation” as Paul called it. But that coming has not always been easily understood or accepted. Just like in our own lives, it is just as easy to resist the move towards wholeness as it is to say with our lips that we desire it. We began our advent journey by thinking about what it means for us, as Henri Nouwen says, to be active “Waiting for God.”
“The secret of waiting is the faith that the seed has been planted, that something has begun. Active waiting means to be present fully to the moment, in the conviction that something is happening where you are and that you want to be present to it. A waiting person is someone who is present to the moment, who believes that this moment is the moment” (Nouwen).
The waiting, the paying attention, is the first step in getting ready for change. And it is the first step in preparing for the coming of Jesus on Christmas morning.
This second week of advent we turn preparation through healing, reconciliation, and wholeness – as John the Baptizer says “making paths straight.”
“In the fifteenth year of the reign of Emperor Tiberius, when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, and Herod was ruler of Galilee, and his brother Philip ruler of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias ruler of Abilene, during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The voice of one crying out in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways made smooth; and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’” (Luke 3:1–6 NRSV)
- I wonder what stands out to you most about this passage?
- How does John’s message help prepare his hearers and us for Christ’s coming?
- I wonder what paths need to be made straight in our personal and corporate lives?
- I wonder where we most need to experience a “turning” of ourselves towards God?
I look forward to worshipping with you all on Sunday.
C. Wess Daniels
Released Minister @ Camas Friends
1004 NE 4th Ave Camas, WA 98607
“The secret of waiting is the faith that the seed has been planted, that something has begun. Active waiting means to be present fully to the moment, in the conviction that something is happening where you are and that you want to be present to it. A waiting person is someone who is present to the moment, who believes that this moment is the moment” -Henri Nouwen.