ADVENT REFLECTION: Advent Day 14 Personal Reflection by Enuma Okoro

December 15, 2018

From Silence and Other Surprising Invitations of Advent Waiting is difficult business.  Sometimes the hardest work is staying still and trusting that God works even in silence.  We want the confirmation of burning bushes, pillars of fire, and visiting angels.  That is not the stuff of ordinary life, but it does not mean that miracles are outdated or that we cannot expect God to speak new and even unbelievable possibility into our individual and collective lives.  There is something to be said for conditioning ourselves to anticipate these possibilities.  Most of us do not wake up ready and able to receive or understand God’s words.  We have to train ourselves to become the type of Earthly vessels that can endure the challenging joy [...]

ADVENT MEDITATION: Waiting For God by Henri Nouwen

December 1, 2018

From Finding My Way Home Waiting is not a very popular attitude.  Waiting is not something that people think about with great sympathy.  In fact, most people consider waiting a waste of time.  Perhaps this is because the culture in which we live is basically saying, “Get going!  Do something!  Show you are able to make a difference!  Don’t just sit there and wait!”  For many people, waiting is an awful desert between where they are and where they want to go.  And people do not like such a place.  They want to get out of it by doing something. In our particular historical situation, waiting is even more difficult because we are so fearful.  One of the most pervasive emotions in the atmosphere around us is fear.  People are [...]

ADVENT MEDITATION: Meditation by Friedrich Wilhelm Foerster

November 27, 2018

From Christ and the Human Life Above the portal of the ancient cathedral in Lisbon is found a marvelous portrayal of the Blessed Mother and her child.  Mary, the image of purity and divine grace, is not bent over the child: she is looking far, far away, as if she were contemplating the deepest meaning of the Incarnation of the divine Spirit and as if she were surveying the immeasurable consequences of the event upon which shone the star of Bethlehem.  What is that deepest meaning?  It becomes clear to us when we hear from the streets the cries of newspaper vendors calling out the latest news.  This latest news is basically age old and constantly repeated: the cold or hot war of everyone against everyone else.  Its simple cause lies [...]

ADVENT MEDITATION: Action In Waiting by Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt

November 24, 2018

From Action in Waiting It is Advent again.  We call this time Advent because it reminds us of what comes from God for the creation of his kingdom on Earth.  We who are here have been led in a special way to keep what is coming on our hearts and to shape ourselves according to it.  That which comes from God – that is what moves our hearts, not only in these days but at all times.  That which is to come from God is the most important thing we have, in the past and in the present as well as in the future.  It is only in God’s coming that even the Bible itself has value to us, let alone all the other things we call “means of grace.”  Unless what comes from God is a part of it, it remains like a dead seed and does not achieve [...]

ADVENT MEDITATION: As I Wait For God by Gerard Thomas Straub

December 1, 2015

From Falling Silent In his book, No Man Is An Island, Thomas Merton wrote: “There must be a time of day when the man who makes plans forgets his plans, and acts as if he had no plans at all.  There must be a time of day when the man who has to speak falls very silent.  And his mind forms no more propositions, and he asks himself: Did they have any meaning?  There must be a time when a man of prayer goes to pray as if it were the first time in his life he had ever prayed; when the man of resolutions puts his resolutions aside as if they had all been broken, and he learns a different wisdom: distinguishing the sun from the moon, the stars from the darkness, the sea from the dry land, and the night sky from the shoulder of a [...]

ADVENT MEDITATION: The Human Experience Of Waiting by Joan Chittister

December 16, 2012

From The Liturgical Year When all the feasts have been celebrated and all the prayers are said and done, the strength and power of the liturgical year does not lie in its cataloging of feast days and seasons, as important as these are.  Nor does it lie in its rubrics and rituals.  The real power of the liturgical year is its spiritual capacity to touch and plumb the depths of the human experience, to stir the human heart.  By walking the way of the life of Jesus, by moving into the experience of Jesus, we discover the meaning of our own experiences, the undercurrent of our own emotions, the struggle it takes to go on walking the way. By taking us into the depth of what it means to be a human on the way to God — to suffer and to [...]