Advent for Weary Souls

unknown-1

I’ve spent every Christmas Eve of my life seated in a cushioned church pew or standing on wooden platform, raising a glimmering candle in the air and singing sweet songs about a sweet baby who gave himself to this world through the miracle of incarnation. My heart is as full of gratitude as my eyes are full of tears because this is our long expected Jesus. This is an Advent for Weary Souls.

This baby King came to this world in the humblest of circmstances. He came poor, weak child, utterly dependent on his mother. He was persecuted and hunted by Herod, scrutinized by his parent’s community, and born in the presence of barn animals. He spent the first two years of his life in hiding from a man who wanted to kill Him. He was an unexpected King born for the hated and neglected of the world. Much to humanity’s surprise, He was not born only for the Jews, but for the Gentiles. For the women. For the sinners. For slaves. For those who would never learn to love Him.

I think, if He was born today, generations to come would raise candles in the air and sing of a baby born in an alley to unlikely young parents who fed him on food stamps. He’d be wrapped in dirty newspapers and laid in a milk crate. Prostitutes and homeless people on city streets would come to adore him in place of shepherds. You might be shocked, but they may even be black. HE might even be black.

Jesus would sit with the kid who is made fun of for having two dads. He’d befriend and defend the kid who’s called “faggot” as he walks down the hall. Jesus would give dignity to the girl who cries when she sees the word “whore” painted on her locker because He knows her real name. He gave it to her.

At the dinner table, Jesus wouldn’t laugh along at the racist or sexist joke. He’d look at the teller with eyes full of love and grace and tell them just how much the lives of women and minorities mean to Him. Act like it or not, their lives matter too.

Instead of making trips through the disrespected region of Samaria, he’d be getting off the city train at the stops where you grip tight to your purse and become stiff in your chair.

If Jesus was born today we wouldn’t deny that He came for us all- that He values us all. But He was born over 2,000 years ago, and for some, this is just enough time to forget just how far and wide the gift extends.

I don’t know if some have just forgotten or maybe they never understood- Jesus is for everyone. If you claim to follow Him, than you should be for everyone too. In word and in deed. In the way you vote. In the way you spend your money. In the way you spend your time.

Jesus’ birth was about unifying a broken world. From the moment He was born and forever, Jesus has made room for all of us at His table. The invitation goes out to all people regardless of gender, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation. This Christmas is about so much more than your personal relationship with God. This is about all of us. This is about our broken world.

His birth was an advent for weary souls– a voice for the voiceless, parent to the orphan, advocate for the oppressed and misunderstood. This year when I raise my candle, I will rejoice that Jesus, who is ever interceding for us, intimately understands the plight of our world. As we end a year that has been charged with immense hate and discrimination, we can look to our Blessed Hope, our Great Equalizer, a baby born in a stable and laid in a manger.

The Good Stuff

I should be thankful all the time, but November’s got me feeling some sort of way. So rejoice with me, because even though life is weird right now, IT’S REALLY AWESOME. Here’s why.

THIS IS US

unknown

Cue all the emotions and all the tears and that fluttery feeling you get in your heart when you love someone. This show has become a Wednesday night ritual for Megan and I and a perfect excuse let out all the stress induced tears we’ve been saving up.

Thoughts so far: Jess (I think his name is Jack but that doesn’t really matter because uhhhh Gilmore Girls) is perfect in every way, Kate’s weight loss journey is making me all sorts of empathetic, Randall is my bff, Kevin is fine, Mandy (maybe Rebecca?) is a 70s fashion kweeeen, and MIGUEL IS A DIRTY SCOUNDREL I JUST KNOW IT. If you need a new show, I highly recommed it- but be warned…. it’s a journey.

DOS BROS $5 MONDAYS

Dos Bros, when you came into my life, I had no idea what you’d mean to me. For years I prayed for Chipotle, but thankfully I got you instead. Thank you for all you are. I don’t tell you this enough, but you are so important to me ❤

baby4

(I hate myself)

MY PERFECT NIECE AND NEPHEW

My favorite people in the entire world. It’s such a gift to be an aunt. LOOK HOW CUTE THEY ARE.

 

BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER

About a year ago, I bought an Episcopal Book of Common Prayer from a used book store. Recently I’ve really enjoyed using it as part of my quiet time with the Lord. It helps me get back to God-centered, scripturally sound prayers when I’ve become a bit too self concerned.

I think this is simply beautiful:

Almighty and everlasting God, who art always more ready to hear than we to pray, and who wants to give more than either we desire or deserve: pour down upon us the abundance of thy mercy, forgiving us those things whereof our conscience is afraid, and giving us those good things which we are not worthy to ask, but through the merits and meditations of Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Book of Common Prayer- Proper 22

MAY 2017

Hey do you have any plans for May? Because I don’t. I could be enitrely freaked out about this, but I’m choosing to cherish every moment that I’m in and trust God that He will let me know the next step and exactly when to take it…. and probably not a moment before.

I’m actually really thankful that I have practically no idea where my life is headed. It turns out that the future doesn’t offer an arm to hold you up, but Jesus actually does. I’m falling so hard for Him all over again and it rocks. He’s got my back. My calendar is all clear for Him.

So that’s it! Comment and share the things that are making your life great!