Advent #1

Advent #1, Hope

Jeremiah 33:14-16
The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring up for David; and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will live in safety. And this is the name by which it will be called: “The Lord is our righteousness.”

John 1:5
Everything was created through him; nothing—not one thing!— came into being without him. What came into existence was Life, and the Life was Light to live by. The Life-Light blazed out of the darkness; the darkness couldn’t put it out.

We seem to be trained
to be afraid of and in
the dark.
Yet the shoot
Jeremiah writes of
grows, develops,
comes to fruition
in the dark.
It is in the dark where
our growth happens
Barbara Brown Taylor
writes of
learning to walk in the dark
about just that.
We avoid darkness,
name it evil,
still, it can be good
for us and to us.

# # #

Walking in the dark.
Things to trip over.
Things that go bump.
the stuff of scary movies.
Here is where nightmares are born.
Creatures lurk here.
Monsters are bred here.
The Dark exists
for those who eschew light.
The Dark has
a heart-beat all of its own.
Emotions are vulnerable here.
Crises are more intense here.
Loss is emptier in the darkness.
become more real in that non-light place.
Things that are only
in the light of day
take on real possibilities
the sun goes down.
And yet,
metaphor aside,
long after most of have gone to sleep—
and after we
have checked our locks.
How do we walk in the dark?
How do we breathe
on those nights
with the weight of the dark
crushing us;
on those nights
when the lights are out;
on those nights
when the dark overwhelms
we sense we are being touched by
its velvety tendrils?
In these times
is there a Life-Light
blazing out to us?
Will we burst
the crust of the soil?
Will the tendrils
growing from
the dead stumps
of our hopes and dreams
send forth the green leaves
of fulfilled promise?
In our darkest hours,
our feet seeking firmness
and the next step,
are we able
to find comfort
in the knowledge
of the peace to come?


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