This year I’ve taken a different approach to Advent. This is interesting to me because in past years of my life, I haven’t really approached Advent at all. I haven’t been mindful of this event. I never really “got it”. Advent was lost in the turmoil and noise that happens this time of year.
In late November, my friend Julia suggested that we alternate sharings of brief writings in the spirit of waiting, of what we noticing during the waiting. Throughout December, we’ve traded days and written short paragraphs about our “noticing” during this Advent season. Noticing things in the natural world, often relating to light and dark, as the nights get longer. Noticing our feelings of waiting. Sharing about the coming day of Christmas, the birth of Christ. Sharing about Solstice. Writing them down. Reading them to each other over the phone. Daily.
This has been enjoyable, soothing and deepening in the Spirit. As a spiritual practice, these readings and sharings have helped keep my focus away from all the commercial noise that rises to a crescendo around Christmas. And, it has helped my focus on two happenings this time of year: Solstice and Christmas. I don’t see these two as incompatible. The coming of the Light. Waiting expectantly for messages from God. And sharing those messages. The sharing has been very connecting.