What is left? Prayer…

So this is how you swim inward. So this is how you flow outwards. So this is how you pray.
Mary Oliver

On this quite night we come to the most important moments of our Advent journey. We feel the time for slumber with all projects complete and hearts and homes prepared. We were asked to be on alert and to get ready. We have watched for the signs and completed the tasks

But all the preparation leads us to this moment. For like midwives we must stand near, ready for the ultimate job. In/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/751/11099331/files/2014/12/img_1937.jpg prayerful presence as this young baby is born we are here at highest alert – to assist if needed. This is why we have been waiting. This is the moment, all of our preparation leads to ‘now’.

May we stay calm – to draw our breath as it swims inward and exhale as it flows outward; the rhythm of birth and the practice of prayer.

 

…maybe Christmas means a little bit more

 
ChristChildandMaryIcon
(shared from pen and palette)
 

“It came without ribbons!  It came without tags!  It came without packages, boxes or bags!”…
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!  “Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more!”
(Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!)

With all the distractions and details that precede this day, it is easy to wonder if the meaning of Christmas has been lost. Not one more sale nor sour-faced Grinch can change the gift brought to all on this daybreak. Hope is renewed in the birth of baby. Faith is rekindled in the bright morning star. Hearts soften as God’s love comes among us in the gentle care of a parent’s touch.

Yes, the meaning of Christmas is beyond all the chaos leading up to this moment. In the quiet of this early morning, may the spirit of Christmas be near and bring peace.