Advent

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Am I the only one who feels this holiday season is darker than usual? Anyone else more likely to be discouraged than rejoicing? I feel like this advent is more a waiting for the other shoe to drop, heavily and forcefully, than a joyful anticipation of peace and light. So I wrote something today, thinking of all the wonderful people I know who labor hard to make our world better, who suffer to witness suffering, and who long to see peace and hope realized…

Advent
A carol for disheartened light-bringers.
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The dark is thick
…..and the road rough, dangerous.
This journey is long,
…..made more difficult still
…..by what is growing in me.
I don’t know if I can bear this…
.
There is so much fear.
Sometimes it is hard to breathe,
…..with this life unrealized kicking inside,
…..and all the terrors outside.
Would I be a coward to say
…..my initial bravery is wearing thin?
That I don’t want to keep going?
That I see nothing
…..but heartache ahead?
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There is heartache behind, too.
And this promise of presence,
…..this hope that beats
…..with my heart,
…..says the light shines so,
…..even the thickest dark
…..cannot overcome it.
Yet… how can God be with us,
…..with our hate and violence?
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We move forward.
We hear there is no room,
…..even – especially – for those
…..who need the most.
I am in pain.
For what would I labor?
What could I
…..possibly bring forth
…..that could change this world,
…..all this disquiet night?
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It seems there is always
…..a place among the least,
…..a perpetual welcome
…..to be amongst those
…..who are never invited.
So here we are,
…..and all there is
…..is waiting in the dark,
…..weeping with the pain,
…..pushing against the fear.
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Now I know
…..this is how love
…..enters the world:
…..humbly, small and swaddled,
…..amidst the misery,
…..in spite of the dread.
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I see a light in the dark.
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