What is the soundtrack to your Advent? Does it include the ancient chants, “O Come, O Come, “Emmanuel” and “Creator of the Stars of Night”? Or do you find yourself softly humming a livelier tune like “On Jordan’s Bank” or “The King of Glory”? Does your soundtrack also include some of the cacophony of the shopping malls? How about a generous dose of silence or stillness?
The Spirit of God speaks to us in the sounds and silence and symbols that touch our five senses and our memories. Advent carols, the darkness, the flickering light of the Advent wreath, the color purple, the cold, the unexpected wafting of the scent of pine, the words of the prophet Isaiah—all of these are meant to touch the core of our very being.
The refrain of a contemporary rendition of the “O” antiphons by Marty Haugen is entitled “My Soul in Stillness Waits.” It captures that graced experience of waiting in stillness and longing deeply for God. We are called to expect the Lord’s coming as we “wait in stillness”— even if briefly — every day of our life. Advent challenges us to be watchful and to wait. We do not want to miss the Lord when he comes.
As we enter the season of Advent, there is great turmoil and suffering in our world. War and weather disasters rage in many parts of the globe. We are called to listen with the heart to the cries of the poor, the displaced, the broken, the alienated, and the lost. God sent his Son to walk with us and to share our joys and our sorrows. Jesus Christ, the promised one whom we await, declared by his life and his death that love will ultimately triumph over hate. Let us ponder this message as we continue to “wait in stillness.” Truly, our hope is in the Lord.
Peace and all good things!
S Judith M Kubicki