Monday, December 20, 2010

Advent Invites Adventure!

Adventure ~
ad-ven-ture 1: a risky undertaking
2: a remarkable and exciting experience

As we begin this fourth week of Advent several thoughts and ideas run through my mind about this beautiful season of the year. A couple of weeks ago I just wanted to see what the dictionary said for the word Advent and discovered that the word "adventure" was only two words down from Advent in my Webster Dictionary. To me, the two words really are related!
Are we not invited to a risky undertaking when we set time apart for more prayer and some introspection to see how we can prepare our hearts for the coming of Christmas? Is not this time of preparation for Christmas a call to growth and the discovery of what a remarkable and exciting experience
the life of Jesus - the light that powers over dark - can bring us if we are open to the adventure!?!
As a Christian I am invited again and again
to take a risk ... to take the risk ... to reach out to others around me who might "walk in darkness", who maybe are not as fortunate as I am, who perhaps have stumbled into difficult times, who might feel sad and lonely and even disconnected and try to bring them a bit of love and care that was manifested on that first Christmas day. I have felt that way - at a low ebb at different times in my life and have been blessed with others who cared and brought me the light of God.
The little picture/poster shown above is
just such an example ... In 1989 I was teaching 4th grade at St. Charles School in Spokane , WA. At one point of the year I was feeling rather down, "disconnected", in the dark about some things in life and in community - I didn't think it showed especially when I was involved in the teaching day. Well, one morning one of my beautiful students brought in the pictured banner/poster shown above for me. I was totally shocked! It was exactly what I needed ... and I asked Alicia how it came about ~ what got her to do it?? Her response was so innocent and spontaneous: "Oh, I don't know ... I was watching TV last night and it just popped into my head, so I did it! ...and I want you to have it." WOW! Light powers over Dark ...... as God powers over EVEL (evil). That was pretty profound for a fourth grader. I know that little girl allowed the light of God to work in her life and she touched my life immensely!
This morning on my way to work I switched the radio to the Catholic radio station. It is the tradition of KBVM to broadcast the story, The Cinnamon Bear
- a classic 1937 story of the adventures of Judy and Jimmy Barton who have set out and are trying to find their missing silver star for the Christmas tree. I don't think I have ever heard the whole story, just snippets from year to year. Anyway, this morning fifteen words made an impact on my ears and heart as one of the characters said, "What I mean is - It's dark inside of me when I have my eyes closed." As we continue the journey through these last days of Advent, may we be people of the light, with our eyes wide open ready to take a risk and know of God's remarkable and exciting experience of the birth of Jesus ... O Come, O Come Emmanuel!

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