The weeks leading up to Christmas are noisy. Not just the Christmas carols blaring at the mall or the neighborhood block parties or the sugared up kids.
Schedules get noisy. Calendars get noisy. Lives get noisy.
My husband and I have done all that we can this year to pare down as we head into the holidays, and between gatherings, get-togethers, church events, and travel we still scarcely have an evening free until Christmas Eve.
Yet Advent is a season where God graciously calls us to silence. To stillness. To letting go and waiting for him to show up, because he has and he will.
If we let the chaos crowd in, we can miss the miraculous.
It’s like T. S. Eliot wrote over half a century ago:
Where shall the word be found, where will the word
Resound? Not here, there is not enough silence.
— “Ash Wednesday”
Millennia ago, a young girl prepared to birth the king of the universe. She traveled to the hill country to visit her cousin, Elizabeth. When the two met, Mary burst out into song:
Luke 1:46-47 (NIV)
My soul glorifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
Mary lived in the already-and-not-yet of welcoming Jesus. As he grew within her, she knew him intimately and yet not at all. She had not yet looked at his face or let his tiny fingers curl around her weathered ones. The pains of childbirth were still to come, and the joys of motherhood.
We live in the already-and-not-yet of welcoming Jesus. He was born and lived and died and rose again. He is coming again. We prepare for Christmas to welcome him anew, and we look toward the end of time when he will come to set all things right.
Can we, like Mary, make space in our calendars, our schedules, our bodies, our very lives, to glorify him until he comes again?
Take a moment today to sing to him. Maybe in church, maybe in your car, maybe under your breath as you rock a baby to sleep.
What’s the new song God has given you this Advent?