Icon at St. Catherine’s Monastery
Christmas is coming! We live this Season of Advent as if its purpose is to point to the beginning (or the “re-beginning”). We prepare for the coming of God! But think about it. Something happened nine months before. This human Jesus, like all of us, had to be grown and nurtured in the womb before the miracles started. March 25th—The Feast of the Annunciation—is for some traditions the turning point of human history. It is in this moment that God steps through the fog into humanity and, just like every human that came before, must wait to be fully birthed into this world.
We Protestants sort of skip over the Anunciation. And then we start with Christmas and count back nine months. After all, it’s just a bunch of waiting, right? OK, that works. Nine months before Christmas…But March 25th is traditionally regarded as the first day of Creation. (Now, really, I don’t even BEGIN to say that THAT is a real date! But, it’s as good as any, right?) So, let’s go with it. March 25th is the beginning. The Anunciation…the announcement of the coming of Christ, the coming of God, into our little world…IS the first day of Creation. (You know, “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was…”) So, begin at the beginning and count forward…to the birth of God into the world. Like Creation, the coming of Christ was the Light pushing the darkness away.
But the world, like any expectant parent, had to wait. Advent teaches us to wait. Advent teaches us that birth does not appear in a flash. Rather, birth, like all things that matter, is a process. And, it is definitely worth the wait.
God will come when God will come. But we don’t want to miss the process of the birth.
In this season of Advent, give yourself the gift of being a part of the process of birthing the world into being. But part of it means that you have to wait until it’s ready to be.
Grace and Peace,