Beloved, it’s almost here!!!
In this past week we have felt our feelings, including the shadow side of those feelings. On Joy Sunday we explored the idea that God is NOT joy, and also not not joy. Then last night at our Longest Night service, in the dark of the sanctuary, surrounded by candlelight, I watched sweet little Carmen lean into the strong anchoring presence of our dear Marlin, both of them crying, and I wondered, “how do people do life without good church? How do people do this without each other and our God to lean on?”
They were not the only ones crying: many of us wept and prayed about personal crises and global disasters, lit tiny candles in the darkness again the grief, doubt, fear and overwhelm. It was wonderfully cathartic (helped by the roaring fire in the garden, four part harmony and hot cider. Hot cider is one manifestation of the Holy Spirit, if you ask me—sweet strength beyond ourselves).
Now this Sunday, Advent Cantata Sunday, let’s let our hope/peace/joy and now LOVE be unmixed. This may be the first cantata in my living memory when we have not had a snowstorm of some sort (am I jinxing us by saying that out loud?).
Greg, Justine, Chelsea, Project Soul, the Choir and Children’s Choir have great music in store for us. The music will tell us the old, old story, a story that we never tire of hearing, with a little annotation by me, Jeff and other Firsties.
After worship, we’ll tumble downstairs to a Christmas Feast, then to carol at the top of our lungs, and to watch our young ones open gift books for their spiritual library.
For one last good Christmas together, Beloved, we pray to the Lord.