When I wake up in the morning and it’s still dark, I flip open the pages of the Advent books while muffled noises trickle down from upstairs. I missed so many days of readings. So many. And yet, even with my half-hearted attempts at observing Advent, even with all the distractions and busy-busy and partially-read pages, I feel a difference in the air around me. It feels like an air bubble, the kind that offers a small pocket of oxygen when everything around you drowns in jingle bells and dollar bills.
The dog wakes up every morning and heads straight to the tree for a soupçon of pine needle infused water. It makes me laugh every time. His bowl of water goes untouched throughout the day, and he satiates his thirst off the tree which drops needles like crazy. I find them embedded in his fur. I can’t help but think about how thirsty I am for living water to revive these dry bones, how I want to sidle up to the tree shaped like a cross and drink from the cup of salvation over and over again.
I know I’m supposed to think about the baby in the manger this time of year, but when I try to picture him, I see a king. I see a warrior. I see him risen, riding on a horse with his hem dipped in blood. This is the Savior I want to see while the world hurtles towards hell. This is the Savior we need today. This is the Savior we needed in Bethlehem, and yet he came as a child. How unexpected.
I think he still shows up in the unexpected today. He shows up in our hands and feet, if we’re willing. He doesn’t always look like the baby or the warrior king, he looks like you and me, living temples of the Spirit of God. I’m thirsty. I am all dry bones and dehydrated flesh. I want to live like I have the savior of the world inside of me, so I can offer more than just myself to others, I can offer them a cup of living water.
For unto us a child is born, and the thirsty, weary world rejoices.
I plan to take a little time off from the blog this week, unless I decide I shouldn’t for mental health reasons. Writing keeps me sane. So do cookies, which I plan to eat in abundance. What’s one thing keeping you sane this week?
Wishing you and yours a wonderful, life-giving Christmas holiday wherever this week may find you.