Tag Archives: Baby Jesus

Advent Waiting

Christmas is about the birth of a baby. We know that pregnancy, like Christmas, is often a flurry of preparation. That last four weeks, most of the preparations are complete. We are left with a time of waiting.

As a culture, we’re not good at waiting. Waiting on hold on the phone, waiting in line, waiting for our teen or partner to return, waiting for our paycheck, waiting for whatever…is exasperating. My new book “Elizabeth Gets Her Wings,” begins with impatient Elizabeth trying to get on God’s good side so she can get her wings early. She didn’t want to wait.

My Advent season has usually been a time of doing, four weeks of preparation for Jesus’ birth. This year I have heard God speak to me through many sources about Advent as a time of waiting – waiting with open hands and open heart.

Today, I arrived at church with my mind and heart focused on Advent waiting. We were collecting toys for the Salvation Army baskets. I’ve been so wrapped up in book signings that I had forgotten. As I waited for the collecting to be done, scolding myself for being so selfish, I heard these words in my heart, “Go get your new children’s Christmas books from the car. How often will a child receive a book signed by the author? I smiled. Before I set the books with the other toys on the chancel steps, I wrote this message for the child who would receive them, “Always remember you are God’s precious child.” Food for the soul: what better gift for a young child at Christmas? Already my focus on Advent as a time of waiting has borne fruit. I am grateful.

“Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord”.  Psalm 27:14

Mary Did You Know?

When my children were born, I had many hopes and dreams for them. Today, each one works with young people teaching, offering healing. They have far exceeded my wildest dreams for them. I give thanks to God every day for the blessing of their lives and love.

“Mary Did You Know,” a beloved Christmas song, asks, “Mary did you know that your baby boy…” would heal people, calm storms, teach, preach, and give his life for the world? Mary believed her son was a special child of God, the long awaited Messiah who would lead her people to freedom. Yes, Jesus far exceeded her wildest dreams for him.

Each and every child that is born, male or female, is a special child of God. Each baby begins with the God-given potential to bring joy and healing to our world. We cannot see into the future. We don’t know what wonder or pain awaits a new baby. Like Mary we are called to love each child and believe “with God, all things are possible”.

The news tells us about the lost children, the difficult ones. On the street we see strangers who appear different from us. They come packaged as young people pierced and sullen, or adults tough or lost. Society has taught us to fear them, to turn away. In his day, people feared the itinerant preacher, Jesus. With hindsight, we can see the wonder and joy that Jesus has given us. As Christians, we know the acceptance and forgiveness he brought and still brings to the pain and misery of our hurting world.

This Christmas, as we prepare to celebrate Jesus’ birth, remember that each new baby, each child, each adult has been born with the potential to bring goodness to our world. Open your heart to receive that goodness at every opportunity.

 

“My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me. Holy is his name.”

(Luke 2:46-49)