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Advent, Day 11

The following comes from a book entitled, Companion to the Book of Common Worship.  Perhaps only super-Presbyterians ever think to read it, and it is not always thought of as being a source of poetry and prayer, but I really liked the informative and lovely language it included about the season of Advent.  I hope you find something in these words as well.

 In Advent we expectantly wait for the One who has already come. We anticipate the promised justice of God’s new world, yet we praise God who raised the “righteous branch” to rule with justice and righteousness. We hope for the restoration of the afflicted, the tormented, and the grieving, yet we delight that healing has come in Christ. We long for the beating of swords into plowshares, yet we rejoice that the Prince of Peace has appeared. We yearn for the barren deserts of our inner cities to flourish, yet we laud the desert Rose that has bloomed. We dream of the land where lions and lambs live in harmony, yet we acclaim the child born to lead us into the promised land.

Christ has come! Christ is risen! Christ will come again! In Advent, we are living between the first and the second coming of the Lord. The dialectical tension of maranatha [alternately translated “Come, our Lord!” or “Our Lord has come”] — placing us between memory and hope, past and future — may strengthen our Advent liturgies. Perhaps we need to cling to the ancient cry of maranatha! and its paradoxical meanings so we may freely embrace “the new thing” prophesied by Isaiah (Isaiah 43:19) that God is doing among us right now. The tension and paradox we find in Advent shapes our celebrations during the season.

I love the idea that in Advent we are placed "between memory and hope."  The same thing is true every time we celebrate communion.  We remember the meal Christ shared with his disciples before his crucifixion and look forward to the time when all will dwell at the heavenly banquet table with God.  Like communion, there is something special, something holy about Advent.  

Peace,
Laurie

Posted by Laurie Weicher at 7:00 AM
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