This year Advent resonates with me on a deep level as I continue my process of integrating the self, crafting my identity into a whole that includes my new role as “author.” I am used to being the one in the therapist’s chair, helping and bearing witness to others’ stories of joy and pain. During this season I have needed to break out of my help-seeking reluctance and normally reserved stance into what has begun to feel like a state of constant self-reflection and neediness, way out of my comfort zone. I have cycled through the same conversations with Dusty, tried yet again to begin a regular practice of prayer and meditation, and turned to friends in order to ruminate aloud about what my own therapist is calling “an ecstatic experience.” My book is done and will take printed form any day now, but I am waiting for its release on Feb. 1. It is glorious, exciting, anxiety-inducing and vulnerable, all at once.
My meditation today focused on Isaiah 40:31: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
I’m in a stage of waiting as I sit in the anticipation of Advent. I’m not only waiting for a book, but for goodness and light and God in human form. Maybe this anticipation is something for me to revisit year after year in different ways as I rediscover Jesus again and again from a slightly (or dramatically) different perspective. This year I await his presence hoping for peace and clarity. As we rotate through the slinky spiritual growth we all continue to do, revisiting familiar doubts, questions, struggles, and joys, Jesus arrives again and again in his perfect balance of the creative power of God mixed with the delicate vulnerability of a baby, subject to all the same struggles and joys of being human that we experience. Let’s embrace vulnerability and receive strength as we wait together and look for Jesus to show up in the midst of it. He arrives, understands the nuances of our human experiences, and offers a way forward.