Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Recapturing Advent

Advent is the season of Expectation, encapsulated, perhaps, in ingredients of our days here in the northern hemisphere. There is less daylight, protracted colder nights and the advancing of winter - so it's essential to prepare for any eventuality, especially on an Island.

The whistling of the wind today, couldn't muffle the incessant sound of canned street music, even to be heard inside the shops in Peel High Street. Rudolf, Frosty the Snowman, Santa and other characters were already grating on nerves. The chap in the second hand book shop told me he'd turned up his own music in the hopes of drowning out the 'musack'. Woman's Hour told their listeners that today was the first day of Advent. Apparently, over 25,000 people contacted the Beeb to put them right. It is 1st December, and the first window of an Advent calendar can be opened, but Advent Sunday was on 29th November.

Let's recapture Advent. The active part of Advent could be regarded as inactive! The very essence is about waiting - and a close walk with biblical people of waiting reminds me of its importance. Mary and Elizabeth were both awaiting the fulfilment of promises. In common with all expectant mothers, these women knew waiting must be accepted, even celebrated. This particular kind of waiting sometimes requires patient endurance, but promises much.

Even amidst the current culture of immediacy, there can be no shortcuts. We can't fast forward to Christmas. So consciously setting aside the bling of the run up to Christmas, I am actively reclaiming Advent and savouring its treasures - some of which are found in the long hours of darkness.

Weather update - We are once again being pounded by a storm, and sadly I have to tell you that the larger, very new window has failed, not quite as spectacularly as the last, but it is definitely not fit for purpose.

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