Commercialism has hijacked Christmas! The papers and newscasts are reporting yesterday's shopping frenzy. Who gets up to be at Walmart at 5:00 AM the day after Thanksgiving?!! It's a conspiracy to take over our lives I tell you!!
I am making the decision now that I will prepare for advent in quiet meditation and reflection rather than be co-opted by the marketing gurus and stripped of my shalom. I am joining friends to read through Watch For The Light, a book of daily reflections which are sure to keep our hearts and minds focused on the most awesome event of all human history, the coming of Christ to walk this planet. The readings are recent and ancient, ecumenical and even secular, with excerpts from Bernard of Clairvaux, Martin Luther, T.S. Eliot, Thomas Merton, and Anne Dillard, to name a few. The overall tone of the book is rather hard-edged, emphasizing the poverty, paradoxes, and perplexities of the Nativity.
Forget the Hallmark sentiments, the coming of Jesus into our backside stinking barns is gritty stuff.