“I wait for God, my soul waits, and in God’s word I hope; my soul waits for God more than those who watch for the morning.” -Psalm 130:5-6a
Advent begins this Sunday. Advent is an entire church season dedicated to the spiritual discipline of waiting. During Advent, we are waiting for Christmas, and preparing to celebrate the birth of Christ. We sing special music during Advent and light candles to mark the weeks leading up to Christmas. For many of us, it is a favourite time of year.
This year, I invite us all to enter into Advent on a deeper level. As this pandemic wears on, many of us are frustrated with waiting for the time when the pandemic will be behind us and the dawn of the new normal upon us. We don’t know how long this time of waiting will last, but we do know that it is not over yet. Advent gives us tools to help us deepen our faith through this waiting.
During Advent, we focus on four themes: hope, peace, joy, and love. Hope sustains us, reminding us that good is on the horizon. Peace calms us, turning our frustrations into prayers and our hearts towards Jesus. Joy in the midst of Advent reminds us that even while we wait, joy breaks through: we can have joy even before the waiting is over. Love—that one-word description of God—fills our hearts and spills over so that we spread love to all even while we wait. May God grant us all the graces of hope, peace, joy, and love this Advent so that we can deepen our faith through waiting.
Grace and peace,