Advent Blue 4: Longing for Light

No matter how much I can learn and practice in the dark, I long for Light to shine. Many Advents ago I went to a gathering of other in ministries of spiritual formation in the bleak midwinter. I carried with me some of the dark Advent blues concerning the direction of my ministry and its [Read More…]

Advent Blue 3: Longing for Joy

The Blueness of this Advent leaves us longing for some Joy. And Advent 3 is Gaudete or Rejoice Sunday! It is the week we are invited to savor the singing of Mary, following her ancestor Hannah: My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior! I cherish these songs of our [Read More…]

Advent Blue 2: Longing for Comfort

Hearts are breaking all over the world! I see them on the newscast daily, and hear them as I listen to conversations. My own heart breaks for parents, for children, for those who have been given many chances and choose to ignore them, and for those who have been given no chance at all. I [Read More…]

Advent Blue: Week 1-Longing for God

Some worshiping communities are using blue as the color for Advent to distinguish it from the traditional purple. The Rev. Eric J. Liles of St Paul’s Episcopal Church says this: Blue represents hope. expectation and heaven…a deep, dark blue is the color that covers us in the dark, cold hours before the dawn. Thus we [Read More…]

Two Hopes for Advent: Books that Inspire

I have been privileged to review two very worthy and helpful books for Advent for the Patheos Book Club. I hope you find them as provocative and charming as I have. An Invitation: Taste and See by Jan Johnson The sacred anticipation of Advent and the joy of Christmastide often seem dimmed and fraught for [Read More…]

Preparing the Way: Loving

Advent IV: A new hymnal introduces an Advent hymn new to me: Rejoice, rejoice take heart in the night. Though dark the winter and cheerless, the rising sun shall crown you with light; be strong and loving and fearless. LOVE BE OUR SONG AND LOVE OUR PRAYER AND LOVE OUR ENDLESS STORY;  may God fill [Read More…]

Preparing the Way: Silence

Advent III: Let all mortal flesh keep silence, and with fear and trembling stand; ponder nothing earthly minded, for with blessing in his hand, Christ our God to earth descended, our full homage to demand. (Liturgy of St. James, 4th Century) Much of the important preparation of Advent happens in silence. Zechariah lives in an [Read More…]

Preparing the Way: Making the Crooked Straight

Advent II: My city is full of potholes and cracked sidewalks. It was a critical talking point in the latest mayoral election–who was the candidate who would make our roads and paths viable so that we could get to where we go in safety? The Advent texts and hymns call us to this task this [Read More…]