“What comes first: God clashing the stars, so it causes people to act in strange and wonderful ways, or God foreseeing the affairs of men and marking them in the sky?”
“I wanted to write a true book about the cost of waiting, and the disappointment, doubt and delay that comes with it. But what surprised me as I delved into the Bible figures was the sheer kindness of God.”
This is my second creative piece for Off the Page in the Prepare Them Room series, on hospitality and refugees in the Christmas story.
Read this and ask yourself: do I recognise any world leaders here? And the more uncomfortable question – do I recognise myself here?
in the style of Those Who Wait. It’s called Prepare Them Room – a series of dramatic monologues exploring Advent through the lens of the Holy Family as refugees – and why we harden our hearts against those in need.
In approaching mystery, we rush to solve it or shut it down. But what if the third option is savouring it? What if wonder is a more appropriate response to the mysteries of God?
Advent is a season that celebrates and marks the discomfort of waiting, as we consider how the saints waited for Jesus’ appearance, and how we long for this world to be restored at Jesus’ second coming.
This is what it means to be a Christian. We don’t freeze our lives as we wait for Christ, as though we must hold our breath until either we die or Christ comes again. There is good to be done in this world, and God’s good gifts to enjoy. And as we enjoy our lives, Christ is still being formed within us. Sometimes we live our lives almost forgetting about Christ. Other times we can feel a quickening in our spirit, as a pregnant woman feels the fluttering of a baby’s first kicks, and we long for a glimpse of heaven.
Every day, I look up at the sky for fifteen minutes and try and connect with God. It is my way of practising the discipline of silence.
But even when the world is quiet, I am the noisiest person in the universe. My internal noise drowns all quiet. My brain just doesn’t stop.