A few years ago, the Rev. Beth Aime preached a sermon in Advent, during which she said that Advent is an “interruption.” (View it at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8cMtHeuiPg)
The season of Advent prepares us for Christmas. On the one hand, we can buy presents, send cards, decorate and do whatever else we think we need to do to create that perfect Christmas. On the other hand, we can also take time to pray and meditate on the impact the birth of Jesus Christ has on our lives and the world.
The very idea of an interruption seems unwelcomed. (I’m busy doing one thing and an interruption means I have to divert my attention to something else.) However, this interruption is all about diverting our attention to that primary relationship with our Creator. It is a joy to know that God’s love is so great for us that God chooses to come into our lives. God desires a relationship with each one of us. Our journey is about somehow finding that, in the midst of our busyness, God is coming. It is to find the Advent in our lives.
In a sense, it is the busyness of our lives that interrupts our awareness of God’s coming each and every day. We have ways to help build our awareness of God’s coming. This year the churches of Prince Street offer an Advent series entitled, What Child Is This? Prophet, Priest, King (Wednesdays at noon). Our parish is offering, Having a Mindful Advent: Practicing Loving Kindness (Mondays at 7:00 p.m.). We also hold regular Sunday morning worship at 8:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. We pack Christmas boxes for families in need, doing practical things for others can be a spiritual exercise. We have a Memorial Carol Sing, remembering loved ones in this way can also be a spiritual exercise. We have Christmas Eve services (5:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.), and Christmas Day (10:00 a.m.).
Each of these opportunities might feel like an interruption, but by welcoming them makes them more of an opportunity to welcome the coming of God into our lives and into the world.