Advent Promises

Wednesday, December 2
Seek and you will find… Matthew 7:7

This past spring our son was diligently preparing a raised garden for his wife’s green thumb. The right place was chosen to catch the sun’s rays, dimensions agreed upon, future herbs, vegetables, and flowers envisioned. Soon, however, a do-able job turned into Churchill’s promise of “blood, toil, tears, and sweat.” Not only were Randy’s efforts blocked by rocks, but by long-buried, thick manzanita roots, roots known to grow thirty-six inches in just three years. Manzanita shrubs produce crimson berries beloved in floral displays, but their beauty was neither attractive nor desired in this garden project.

For just a moment imagine Christmas morning as an anticipated garden and Advent as the process necessary to produce December 25th fruit. The piney scent of cut greens to decorate the mantel and staircase may include sap-sticky fingers. Christmas morning casserole and Christmas dinner ingredients will require careful budgeting and work to prepare. Purchasing much desired gifts require sacrifice.

But want I want most for Christmas morning is a renewed sense of joy, gratitude, and awe. What must I seek and how shall I seek during Advent to make my desires reality? A long look into myself for hidden agendas to be examined in light of God’s call? Extended time, perhaps sacrificial time, in the Word, especially listening to prophets, priests, and poets, to soften my spirit? The Word may reveal hidden pockets of self-centered ambition which, like manzanita roots, must ruthlessly be cut and removed.

Searching is Advent. Finding is Christmas.

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