Holy Waiting – that is how I have been walking and praying with Advent thus far. As a writer, like it or not, I don’t always get to live in the “present moment.” My thoughts, due to published works such as these books, or this prayer guide (coming in May 2014), not to mention the blogs, are often on liturgical seasons and days that we are not living – in just yet. So, I have had Advent on my mind for some time now.
This year I feel Advent, with a different depth than in the past, as Holy Waiting. It is a time that we keep watch for the dawn, like sentinels! And what happens when we are on overnight watch duty? We get sleepy… very, very sleepy. We are called to wait, and we are called to be awake. Holy Waiting and Holy Waking! As someone who can fall asleep just about anywhere, at any time, this is a real challenge for me.
Today is a bridge of sorts, as we cross out of the territory of Thanksgiving, and into the days of Advent. We are in a liminal space, a passage. I remember when I walked from Israel into Jordan. There is a buffered border between the countries, with a fence on either side of a pathway. You are neither here nor there as you cross, having left one place before you arrive at the next. It is an odd feeling, as you glance back to where you were, and you look ahead to where you will be.
That is where we are today, this liminal space, of neither here nor there. Yes, we are still in Ordinary time, true enough, but somehow it feels different already. I think that I am in need of some Holy Patience today, until the sun begins to set and Advent is upon us.
My prayer is that we all journey well, and that we find ourselves waiting and waking up. For now, we simply make our way, fellow pilgrims on the journey.