These days, I notice two parts of me.
There is the part who nods with vigor at all life brings her. She knows it is all grace. She talks a lot. She has tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord and thinks, no, believes, that the promise of His presence is just as sweet as a drop of honey dissolving on her tongue. She picks up trash off the sidewalk because why not? and doesn't doubt that the tiny little small things of her day add up to something resembling redemption.
Then there is the part who has trouble waking up in the morning. And going to sleep at night. Whenever she has a moment to pause, she is silent. She's not sure what she is waiting for, or if she will recognize it when it finally shows up. She thinks about Ferguson and people with cancer and her childhood home sold to some man who will probably paint over the periwinkle walls in her bedroom before he's even unpacked a box.
What will Advent mean to a woman divided against herself?
At the risk of sounding selfish, I will say it: I am afraid there is nothing in this season for me. No miracle for those who aren't sure what role they play in the unfolding epic. Who are humble one moment and proud the next.
A voice responds, "But isn't this whole story hinged upon tension? Upon expectations coming unglued in the wake of reality?"
On the whisper of prophets, the world listens for a Messiah for hundreds and thousands of years,
...a baby's cry? In a stable?
I was not thinking stable, Jesus. I was not thinking meek. I was not thinking vulnerable and exposed to the elements.
I was thinking castle walls, Jesus. I was thinking mighty. I was thinking impenetrable and exempt from pain and suffering.
I thought that was the Savior I needed.
In years past, I have come to this season much differently, hanging Christmas lights from the window, baking sweet treats, humming "O Come, O Come Emmanuel" while washing the dishes. A baby born in a manger; Of course! How natural. How tender. How unassuming.
This year, I come silent. I come suspicious. I come like Thomas, thirsty for proof.
But still, I come.
This post was written as part of a monthly link-up with The Peony Project.