I have a good friend who is expecting a baby. Due to some complications, the baby could come any day between now and the middle of January, the full-term due date. When she first experienced the complications, the baby would have faced serious challenges, had he/she decided to be born. Thankfully, he/she has decided to stay put (for now) and my friend has focused her energy into preparing for the baby to be born.
During the first days of the complication, my friend began counting each day and celebrating the weeks of passing. I don’t think that I have observed waiting and preparation in such a focused way as one does in the anticipation of a child. The intentional decisions to avert travel, eat healthy foods, and save money, among other decisions, indicate the focused intentionality of welcoming a baby who will change their world.
I’ve been reminded when I see my friend of the coincidental timing of the expectation of their baby along with the expectation of the celebration of the birth of Christ. I confess that I often eagerly anticipate the time spent with family and friends or the fun entertainment that is often associated with the season of Christmas. However, the greater reality of Christmas has really not much to do with these things. Talk about changing our world…the birth of God in human form is pretty revolutionary!
Today is the second Sunday of Advent, the season when we eagerly anticipate the celebration of when God became human and “moved into the neighborhood,” as the Message translation of the bible says. Are awaiting the excitement of it all or are we remembering the magnitude of the incarnation? What are we waiting for?
The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son, Generous inside and out, true from start to finish. John 1:14 (The Message)