It’s Sunday morning. There’s a pot of stew in the oven, the boy is sleeping peacefully, my Beloved is saving lives, and I am writing and sipping a peppermint mocha, while the dog gently snoozes next to me. Ahhhhh.
The reason for all this is our local ice storm. Outside my window, the trees are festooned with icicles (another word, like banana, that’s hard to know when it’s over). I am breathing. Just breathing. Nothing needs to happen, nothing is pushing me, nothing is making me feel guilty. I can write and sip coffee and get the yips later. It’s all good.
This day is a gift. The correct response to gifts is “Thank you.” Not, “How can I turn this gift into a chore/guilt trip/productive flurry of activity?”
On Facebook the other day, a friend posted the correct response when someone of a different faith or none at all gives you the gift of well-wishes, whether Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Festive Kwanzaa, Season’s Greetings, Happy New Year, or Joyous St. Michaelmas. It’s “Thank you; you too.”
Grace. Grace is like breathing gently in the icy morning. There are far fewer mountains worth dying on than we think. We all know people who are willing to die on molehills, or worse, sacrifice other people on molehills. Let’s not.
This second Sunday of Advent is about love. Let’s do that. Let’s love our neighbors, our families, people who have hurt us, even ourselves, with the super-natural love that comes from outside us and blooms within us.
The prophet Isaiah, talking about God’s messiah, said that in the messiah’s day:
The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall graze, their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put its hand on the adder’s den. They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain; for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.
Until that day, may the promise of peace and the grace of love be the hallmark of the people who live in anticipation!