An Advent Journey, 2013: Looking for the Light – Day One

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There’s a day coming
when the mountain of God’s House
Will be The Mountain—
solid, towering over all mountains.
All nations will river toward it,
people from all over set out for it.
They’ll say, “Come,
let’s climb God’s Mountain,
go to the House of the God of Jacob.
He’ll show us the way he works
so we can live the way we’re made.”
Zion’s the source of the revelation.
God’s Message comes from Jerusalem.
He’ll settle things fairly between nations.
He’ll make things right between many peoples.
They’ll turn their swords into shovels,
their spears into hoes.
No more will nation fight nation;
they won’t play war anymore.
Come, family of Jacob,
let’s live in the light of God.

Isaiah 2:1-5, The Message

“All nations will river to it. . .”

Can you see it? All of humanity as a living river, ascending the Hill of the Lord to celebrate the Day of the Lord, that day when peace will reign and we will enjoy the richest of mountaintop experiences. If I close my eyes and imagine, I can make it out.

But when I return to my everyday normal, that human river seems further and further away. It feels as though we are always waiting as we live this life. From the mundane to the magnificent – we wait. . . for the dough to rise, for the sun to come out, for the sadness to lift, the questions to be answered, the sky to be rent. Because the truth of it is this: in all our waitings, we want to see Jesus.

Advent marks it out for us, this waiting. It’s a season of expectation, of longing, sometimes, of desperation. The longest night of the year happens during these weeks, ever-increasing hours of darkness punctuate the rhythm of Advent time. As we wait for Jesus to come, I find myself looking for the light, longing for it from the deep places inside my spirit. I wonder if you do, too?

If so, I invite you to ‘live in the light of God’ this Advent, to faithfully look for that light each day — right in the middle of all the hubbub, all the expectations, all the craziness. There will be some days when we’ll have to search hard to see it, but here’s the truth, here’s what I know: the light is always shining. Always. To see it requires attention and intention, a willingness to look with new eyes, and a promise to listen to the heartbeat of your life with hope and expectation. Will you come with me?

God of the Mountaintop and God of our hearts, help us to see the light of your love, even in the midst of shopping, cooking, traveling and w a i t i n g for you to come. Help us to discover you in a new way, an Advent way, as we mark off these days. Amen.

* As an added Advent bonus, I heartily recommend you click on this link and meander over to SheLoves fine post on Random Acts of Advent Kindness. I’m going to try and do this as often as possible and I encourage you all to check it out for yourselves.

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Comments

  1. So, 31 Days in October wasn’t enough, huh? You’re at it again! Hooray!

    Seriously, though, I’ve read a couple of different Advent devotionals this morning, looking for the right one. It was right here at your place.

    • Thank you, Megan. I hope whatever this turns out to be continues to provide encouragement through this season. (And I adored your poem today. Adored.)

  2. how lovely…you are doing it again. I missed your every day in NOvember! Thank you for doing this. and thank you for mentioning EloraNicole’s site. I am thinking of subscribing…it looks like a place I have been looking for, but want to spend some more time on the site. Reecently I read about “liminal space” – all the waiting…I am right there and so appreciate your thoughts this month.

    • Actually, it was every day in October, Carol! And that’s okay. I don’t expect anyone to read all of this stuff. I just hope someone finds most of it useful and helpful at some point. So far, I’m very encouraged by what’s happening at Elora’s site. Everyone is very welcoming (most are much younger than you and I – be aware of that. :>)

  3. Gwen Acres says:

    “Looking for the light” with you Diana. Thank you for your words that help lead the way.

  4. Living as I do in the other hemisphere, our days are getting longer and warmer! We have officially started summer, so I guess you could say we are ‘living in the light’. However, even in this different Advent season, I still look for the light – it is easy to glance over the surface of things, but not really see them. My new camera has made me more aware of light and transparency… although it still doesn’t have sufficient zoom capabilities for my liking! I keep trying to get photos of the way light shines through things – like the red currants I was picking yesterday, when the light shines through them they look tiny Chinese lanterns – but often I can’t get the camera to ‘see’ what I see with my eyes. My camera kept focusing on the bird netting, instead of the currants!
    I guess that’s what it’s really about – focus. In the waiting time, where is my focus?

    • You know, the original version of this post included a line about ‘this hemisphere,’ but it felt a little cluttered so I took it out. And you get it anyhow – we always need to look for the light. Yes, cameras often disappoint us when they don’t catch the light the way we see it. Keep trying and see if you can find it better with practice and fiddling with settings. Also? Take it off of automatic focus and do it manually, if you have that option, for anything where it chooses the wrong focal point.

  5. Hmm … what am I rivering towards?

    Fondly,
    Glenda

  6. LOVE that you’re doing this, Diana! Yes, I’ll look for the light with you — the flame of hope alight in every single circumstance — that darkness cannot extinguish.

  7. “All nations will river to it …” Beautiful, haunting, hopeful words. Thank you so much for sharing them, Diana.

  8. Love this, Diana. May we look for the Light that is always there and then be a reflection where ever the LORD leads us.

    • Amen to all your good words, Patricia. I have a post coming up about ‘mirroring,’ reflecting in our lives what we experience God doing in us. I think that’s at the heart of it all, actually.

  9. “From the mundane to the magnificent – we wait. . . for the dough to rise, for the sun to come out, for the sadness to lift, the questions to be answered, the sky to be rent. Because the truth of it is this: in all our waitings, we want to see Jesus.”

    So true, Diana.

    xoxo

  10. “Because the truth of it is this: in all our waitings, we want to see Jesus.”
    Thank you for this, Diana. These last two years, Advent has taken a deeper turn for me and I see that affirmed in your writing here. Also, sometimes I get so caught up in the fact that we don’t have a house and I forget that what I really want/ need (truly) is to know for sure that God cares and can be trusted. When I look for Jesus’ coming, every day, rather than a house, I’m comforted and confident (mostly ;)) even in the waiting. It’s a matter of adjusting my focus.

    • Ah, yes, that changing focus thing! So important, and some days, so very hard to do. You’re one of the brave ones, Kelly. Blessed Advent to you, my friend.

  11. I, too, wrote about the Light of the world on Monday! His Light is incredibly beautiful and provides comfort, hope, safety and guidance. My desire is to linger in his Light whenever possible during this season–just as you’ve suggested–while card-writing, shopping, cleaning, preparing for guests, etc. How glorious to anticipate discovering Jesus in new ways! Thank you, Diana, for your insights.