Anticipation has flooded my soul today.
Today I got to surprise a whole bunch of children at First Christian Church.
I walked in the room and allowed them to figure out that I was there.
As the murmurs of "Erin's here" spread across the room, the hugs ensued.
It was fun.
During worship, Solomon McKeel was dedicated. Several years of waiting for their son came to another level of fruition today as Scott and Julie gave him back to God in gratitude of the gift he is to all of us.
It was a time of rejoicing.
And as I drove the nearly-five-hours in the rain to the home I'd been missing for days, I anticipated again. I looked forward to a hug from my husband. I was eager to find "my spot" on the couch, beside him, and talk. I was ready to unpack, relax, and settle back in to my routine. When I walked in, relief flooded my soul.
It was a time of peace.
This is Advent to me. A time of fun. A time of rejoicing. A time of peace. Advent is not just anticipation of the 25th of December. It is anticipation of the already and the not yet. It is the first of the year for the church. It is a season of preparation. Advent is a time to look with new eyes to the past - to the child coming in a manger - in anticipation of the future. The world where we will no longer pray for peace, we will worship the Prince of Peace. Advent is a chance to slow down, to start again, to look once more for the Hope that gets lost in the year.
May your Advent be a time of hope.
May you find new ways for the "already" to shape your "not yet" as you celebrate.
May you live in such a way as to bring about the Kingdom.
Anticipate that for which every soul longs.