1st Sunday Advent 2014-Stay Awake

1St. Sunday Advent 2014  Year B

Lets face it….this is one confusing liturgical season!

At some level it makes sense…..

We wait for spring to come and

by now some of us really are waiting for spring!

We wait for Christmas….

have to be honest growing up with the advent candle I used to beg to light the next one during the week so that I could see Christmas coming just a little faster.

We wait for prayer to be answered and sometimes it is and sometimes we are left wondering and wandering.

We have been told this season is a season of waiting

But waiting for what?

The Christ was born

The Christ died

The Christ will come again

We say it, we sing it and we proclaim it at every liturgy

So what are we waiting for?

I mean we are not waiting for the birth of Christ….

it is what we remember and recall….

but it already happened….

this season my friends

is not a season of pretending

it is a season of reality

Maybe what this season really is about

is more about arriving at…rather than waiting for

its just a shift of perspective…

but how do we go about shifting our perspective…

Every paradigm shift involves change…

Change in position, in understanding, in outlook

Just ask Corein….from the first time she planted her feet

and stood in front of this community to proclaim and preach

she has been shifting her perspective and in turn shifting ours!

She described it last week at the end of the liturgy saying…

it was as if she was wanting to turn the corner

and now she has….it was long, it was arduous..it was filled with

doubt and fear and roadblocks and obstacles…

but when she turned the corner….

there…God’s face was shining through our smiles

and God’s arms were reaching out through ours to embrace her…

still as Corein, but as Corein in a new way…

Maybe that is what Advent is about?

Not pretending that Christ will be born

But about arriving at a new perspective

on how God is being born in our lives…

We are still challenged with prejudice

We are still filled with fears and doubts

We are still hurtful and distrustful

We are still scared of mystery

But Advent reminds us

that if we trust in a God

who is so loving that God became one of us

That God, who cares so much that…

God chose to be born, to feel and experience all that we do,

then maybe we can have the courage

and the faith to change our perspective as well.

So what perspective needs to change in our lives?

What is God inviting us to look at differently?

What is God inviting us to let go of so

that we can see our lives in a new way?

Maybe rather than waiting for….

We can really be a people who are preparing to

arrive at….

A new understanding

A new hope

A new dream

A new vision

Of how we can be the heart and hands and feet of Christ in our world!

There is a great prayer that I am sure many of you know and may find helpful…will you join with me as we pray….

God grant me the serenity

To accept the things I can not change

The courage to change the things I can


The wisdom to know the difference

Rev. Marty Shanahan


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