Advent 19

It’s been a long day. Mostly church related. Not bad. Just long. I am tired, body, soul, spirit, voice and joints and the soles of my feet.

So, one quick thought, jumping off from a conversation with a colleague last week:

Advent is really supposed to be a season of preparation, pulling back, pulling away to prepare. It’s probably a good time to scale back and not do as much. But everyone, even churches, is packing in every last drop of Holiday stuff that they can fit.

So, do we suspend every last activity? We were talking about this in conjunction with the Wednesday evening Advent meal & bible study & kids activities tht three of us have been working our tails off to make happen.

For our bunch of people who are showing up for these nights, we know that this is a different “event”, a time when they do pull back: parents are able to leave kids with someone who loves them and go sit quietly together to think and pray. Kids are playing together and reading together in a way that is less structured and more playful and spontaneous that we usually let them be. And then we all come together for a big meal, eaten slowly, at big tables, with what feels like an enormous extended family. Dads come to church from their work commute. Moms hand babies to people past the baby-years. The kids run circles around the room and chase each other and shout alot. I know it’s more of a family dinner than we get in at MY house most weeks.

But still, there are the 3 crazy pastors running around and looking frazzled because we added the organization of this to a season that is terribly busy.

So, we asked each other, what kind of modeling are we doing for our congregation, that we are crazy and busy and frazzled?

I am so tired tonight, but it is all worth it because I know there are about 50 people who were able to slow down and do something different and be God’s people together for an evening.

And so, just like I don’t model Sabbath particularly well on Sundays (when I regularly put in 13 hour days!), I don’t model Advent very well. But I need to take a Sabbath for myself (oh, sweet, sweet Friday…I think of it as the day of he week that god made just for me). And I might need to remember to take Advent for myself…probably not in December, but sometime.