Exe Valley Mission Community


Why are we waiting?

Altogether now….to the tune of, 'O Come all ye faithful'

'Why are we waiting?' Why are we waiting? Why are we waiting? Why? Why? Why? Why are we waiting? Why are we waiting? Why are we waiting? O why? Why? Why?’ It’s a song of my childhood, sung sitting round the dining table, knife and fork in hand, fists lightly drumming against the table in time with the music, while my mother slaved away in the kitchen.

My dad and I thought it was very, very funny.

I suspect my mother did not.

And today, for some strange and unexpected reason, I have found myself wondering why I ever found it so amusing, and - more importantly, why are we waiting?'

You see, I’m hopeless at it. I hate waiting. I want to have everything now, this minute. And of course, generally speaking, that’s exactly what I do. Because I can! And I am not alone. In our present culture, waiting is something of an anathema. We can get what we want straight away. We don’t even have to go to the shops. We can buy stuff, and it arrives the next day. Then, the day after, we can send it back again! It’s as though there is nothing very much which is worth waiting for. Text messages and e mails need to be answered straightaway. Phone calls can be made from the most inaccessible places.

Clearly, the Exe Valley is an exception to this!

Advent is all about waiting. It's not about getting ready or being prepared, or filling up the time in readiness for ‘the big event’.  Neither is it about doing nothing. Waiting is about spending time in the present. It is not allowing ourselves to be influenced by the demands of the future, but taking time to 'be'.

Advent offers us the opportunity to allow ourselves to be transformed by the presence of God. Come and join me at the various Advent reflections across the Mission Community. Each one will be different, so feel free to join me for however many you can. If we spend a bit of time, amid all the busyness, and wait, I suspect that we might then come to the place where the tune remains the same, but the words change. Instead of singing, 'Why are we waiting?' we might find ourselves singing, 'O come let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.'

I look forward to seeing you over the next few weeks as we celebrate Christmas together, and welcome in the New Year, with all that it holds.

With love to you and those you love, Steph

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