Sunday, December 9, 2012

Advent.....Christmas moments. Advent is the waiting for the coming of the Baby Jesus and the waiting for His second coming. I love Advent. Today was the second Sunday of Advent and our church looks more and more like Christmas each Sunday. Today we lit the second candle of Advent which was the candle of peace. Jon preached on John the Baptist and the peace of God "which passes all understanding."

I have found that the peace that the angels spoke of to the shepherds so long ago, "I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.....And the angel was accompanied by a multitude of Heavenly Host praising God and saying peace on earth and goodwill to mankind," often comes to me in little moments. Yesterday after participating in "Christmas in Marble," I sat down with a cup of coffee and three homemade chocolate chip cookies. The Christmas music was playing. Suddenly I was aware of a Heavenly Host within me. The taste of the coffee, the warmth of the cup within my hands, the melting of the chocolate chips in my mouth, the sound of the    music, the quiet of the house and there the Holy Spirit filled my being and Christmas was.

We have had very little snow so far this year. We are in desperate need of snow to restore our moisture. Last night it arrived silently. This morning I was up at dawn shoveling snow off the decks. The church gazebo still had the Christmas lights on and the snow was reflecting the light. It was magical. I looked around at the giant spruce trees and saw them wearing their mantle of snow with such grace and dignity. How could anyone doubt the presence of God with such majesty all around. I was filled with the breath of God and Christmas was.

This world is in such strife with so many experiencing the violence of war. It is easy to forget the peace that God offers us. It is a peace that exists within our hearts even in the midst of war. It is that peace that His son gives "not as the world gives," even in the midst of sickness and sorrow. It is there for us in moments to remind us that we are not alone. It comes to me often in little moments that are unexpected. Yet each time the fullness of it brings tears of joy.

As the sun dropped behind the mountains this afternoon and the Spruce tree that Jon put lights on just outside the church came on and its branches held proudly the snow, I breathed in the cold crisp air and Christmas was.....

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