Daily Bread December 19

Find a Home within Me
Jane Gardner, presiding evangelist

Keep awake therefore, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. But understand this: if the owner of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour. -Matthew 24:42-44

Straining and tuning my ears, I want to hear the refrain, Gloria in excelsis Deo!

But Advent advises that I first must go into the darkness and wait. In my part of the world it truly is the darkness of winter; but, it is also the darkness of doubt, fear, and insecurity. It is absence. It is silence. In the darkness I must carry on the hard work of living. In my better moments, I live based on what I believe is coming. What do I hear?

Let all mortal flesh keep silence, and with fear and trembling stand.

Keep awake in the darkness, the scripture says, “for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.” I wait with the not knowing. Not only that-I wait in hope with the not knowing. I invite the breaking in of God to my life, to my world. What do I hear?

O come, O come, Emmanuel…

It is the work of the Advent season in us to listen carefully for the sounds of hope all around. Making space, sacred space, in this season is challenging. At times it is crucial for me to sit with the shepherds on the Galilean hillside in the dark. We are waiting for something. In the inky black of night, faint notes begin to echo over the hills. Am I ready? Am I truly listening? What do I hear?

Angels we have heard on high sweetly singing o’er the plains…

As preoccupied as I am with Advent tasks, the first notes are barely perceptible. But they crescendo and surround me with unfathomable love. The music finds its way into my dark night. What do I hear?

Hark! The herald angels sing, “Glory to the newborn King…”

Welcome. Come in. Here is my life, such as is it. Find a home within me- in my head, my heart, my mystery, my actions.

The darkness is lifting as the Light of World takes up residence. What shall I sing?

Gloria in excelsis Deo!

Prayer Phrase

“Trust what is being born” (Stephen M. Veazey, Words of Counsel, 2019).

Spiritual Practice

Deepen your breathing as you enter a few moments of silent presence to God. Pay attention first to your own life as you gently ask and notice, “What is most alive in me right now? What is being born in me?” After a few moments of silent listening, ask these questions of your community, the church, and the world. Notice how the Spirit is revealing new life and possibility as you prayerfully ask these questions over time.

Today’s Prayer for Peace

Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.

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