Make space for quiet and prayer in times of tragedy.

Make space for quiet and prayer in times of tragedy.

I’d love to say that I’ve filled my Advent thus far with meditation and contemplation about the coming of Christ.  Unfortunately, it isn’t true. Advent may be a time of waiting but I’ve just been waiting for things to calm down.

As I’ve said before, I live just outside of Ferguson.  As the district attorney announced that the police officer who shot and killed the young man in August would not be indicted, riots broke out.  No, not protests.  Riots.  Burning buildings, flipping over police cars, looting.  Riots.

Just as this calmed down, my father had the nerve to be admitted to the hospital through the ER. Waiting in the ER is one thing.  Waiting when the place is crawling with high-strung emergency workers is another thing altogether.

Not enough drama in my life at this point, I also had a book due. I know?  Couldn’t my publisher have planned better and given me a calmer, quieter deadline?

But in the middle of all of this insanity, I realized that this is the world that Christ came into.  Although we picture a quiet night with shepherds and angels, Christ came into a world full of tension between Roman and Jew. He came into a world where the haves feasted until they had to vomit so they could feast some more while the have nots combed through harvested fields looking for enough to feed their families.

Instead of waiting until things calm down to find Christ, I need to find him amid the furor. It is time to light a Christmas candle and snag a few quiet moments. I can’t expect more than a few but in those moments I can listen for the still small voice calling to me. That voice that is calling me to share his hope with those that have none, the voice that is whispering to me to share his joy with those who know only despair.  I am waiting to discover the details, but like Lori I know that they will come.