Today is the first Sunday of Advent. It’s a time of waiting, expecting and anticipating until we celebrate the birth of Jesus at Christmas. Exactly at the moment when I couldn’t be more frustrated with waiting, that’s what a church community world wide is going to do. The new liturgical year starts with a month of waiting. In a way that helps me to put things into perspective. Just at the moment when I am completely done with it, I am confronted with learning to change waiting into expecting.
For me the difference lies in my attitude. Waiting is passive. Expecting is active. I know deep down that it requires a different mindset. The word Advent comes from the Latin word ‘adventus’ which means ‘coming’. I just realised there might be a connection with the word adventure, although I really don’t know enough Latin to figure that one out. If anyone knows, send me a message or comment. Advent is a period of waiting for something, or rather Someone, that is coming.
Christmas has always been my favourite holiday of the year. I guess it’s the whole atmosphere of joy and happiness. The only thing I don’t like is that it’s usually cold. Bucket list item: celebrate Christmas on the Southern hemisphere some day. Another thing that I sometimes get really annoyed with is the commercialised aspect of Christmas. It’s all about decorations, pretending to be happy families with gifts and stockings. I mean, really? The part of waiting turns into this anxiety of getting another perfect dress. Even though I love almost everything about this holiday, I think I want to focus more this year of the actual waiting itself.
Because I feel that’s what I need to learn about. Because I can learn to let go of that frustrating wanting to know feeling if I allow myself to wait. Not in the passive way in which I am a victim of my own circumstances, but an active expecting of what is to come next. It’s almost December. It’s not just physically dark, but the waiting in my heart is harder and harder to control. It may seem dark now, but if there is one thing that I know about Advent, it’s that it holds a promise. A promise that Jesus will come. The Light of this world who has defeated all darkness. That is my hope. That Light is worth waiting for.