Anticipation

Valley Voice

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Advent here blew in on a low gray day. A frosty mist put vapor in the air and brought an early glow from the shop windows. Enchantment and cheer bubbled up along the streets. Call it cozy weather, rosy cheeks and wrapping up against the chill; here is our season of anticipation, taking in the four Sundays before Christmas, the cheer and devotion in foretaste of an important event.

Outside, we must have winter’s steel sky and frozen breeze; inside, the warmth of trust and expectation.

Darkness is now a more insistent thing than cold. The days are short as a dream. The sun begins to lose force by mid-afternoon and before we know it, it’s time to turn up the lights.

Advent can bring out the child in us – or, rather, the childhood in us. It brings those brief, sweet moments when common things are again uncommon, when our senses are keen with promise and hope.

The season unrolls, a scroll of blessed events. Wherever we look there is color, the enchantment of a single star, a silver moon . The most common pots are full of treasure, all lights are beacons, every sound a chorus. Miracles come quietly, creeping into the heart without the herald of trumpets until we are filled with their wonder. The most miraculous of miracles are those at our own fireside, or outside the door, across the table, in the next room.

Wherever we look, something advertises the future or embraces the past. The view from the living room or the car window is the same as it has been for years but at Christmas it can be shatteringly beautiful, as in a new appreciation of life, of the world around us. Christmas brings thoughts of a new affirmation in living, and of all that living can bring.

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