Keep Christ in Christmas: Waiting in Expectation Like a Child


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“I assure you,” He said, “unless you are converted and become like children, , you will never get into the kingdom of heaven…” Matthew 18:4

images (14)Advent is a time of waiting, waiting in the dark, In Canada, it is cold and in  Greenbush, the snow is falling straight down in huge flakes which absorb sound waves and intensifies the silence of our country home. A deep silence combined with a thick covering of white, clinging to every branch. The effect is a quiet, peaceful, pure white oasis. The thought popped into my mind,

“This is a perfect spot to enter into silence but this time to welcome the child of God into my heart, and onto the face of the earth. Right now I can be an open window a portal for the Holy Spirit. One of many counterpoints of light to push back the darkness.”

I can choose to welcome new life into my darkness, my own inner depression. So I relax and let go of the burdens and allow God to carry them for me. Then I turn my eyes to the child Jesus in silent expectation, waiting to be filled with light and hope because it is Advent, the brink of Christmas, a festival of light, joy and peace on earth.

Because it is the darkest time of the year, the image of lighting one candle each week is powerful. The flames are hot and bright, the exact opposite to the weather, to the physical reality that we see around us in our daily lives. If we are open and humble, the flames of the Advent candles  shine as a beacons of hope in the darkness, symbols of the Light of the world who will come on Christmas morning.

But how do we wait?

Do we wait stoically or with joy? Do we wait like a child, a child who trusts that his daddy will keep His promises or has life’s disappointments left us jaded and closed off to any spiritual surprises? Come to think of it, how many of us actually expect anything to happen to us on Christmas morning? When we are  secretly cynical, we will not receive a thing, not a crumb of Light and we will cement our cynicism in place for another year.

As we wait, secretly longing for the dark, empty places within us to be flooded with His light, we should look to our children to teach us how to wait for the Christ Child to be born anew in our hearts. They trust and believe the words of both their earthly and heavenly fathers. Think of a young child, eyes twinkling, barely able to sit still and contain his excitement because he knows that his dad will never give him a stone instead of a loaf of bread. Yet as the child waits , he also enjoys even the strike of a match, delights in a single flame of the Advent candle because he is open and enjoys simple pleasures. No wonder Jesus tells us,

“I assure you,” He said, “unless you are converted and become like children, , you will never get into the kingdom of heaven…” Matthew 18:4

In fact, why don’t we all humble ourselves and ask for the faith of a child as we wait this Advent.

Has God surprised you with special blessings at Christmas? Can you take a leap of faith and ask your Father in heaven for  the bread of His Presence, knowing He will not give you a stone?

Advent-candle-liturgy

Visit these who are hosting this blog link-up:
Blogs to visit:
Equipping Catholic Families: Keep Christ in Christmas
Campfires and Cleats  How We Keep Christ in Christmas
Coffee Moments with Sam  The Light of Hope
Sue Elvis Writes Bring Christ to Others
Home to 4 Kiddos  Keep Christ in Christmas
Faith Filled Freebies: Keep Christ in Christmas
Written by the Finger of God: Not Christmas as Usual
On the Way Home:  Keep Christ in Christmas

43 thoughts on “Keep Christ in Christmas: Waiting in Expectation Like a Child

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  9. Beautiful. I need more of His presence, and to look for Him. Thank you for the comment about secret cynicism. That one got me for sure. It’s difficult for us grown-ups to trust like a child does.

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  11. Your beautiful reflection puts me into the proper frame of mind – like a child, anxiously waiting. I pray that I will maintain this openness instead of letting the flurry of preparation consume me. Wishing you and yours a blessed Advent!

  12. Melanie, what a beautiful advent meditation. The Holy Spirit shines through your carefully crated words and conveys a the warmth of a child’s heart turned toward Jesus. So glad we are writing friends. God bless your family.

  13. Melanie,

    Oh yes, I agree: the Holy Spirit shines out of your words! I find myself thinking about a few things… trying to see the world through child-like eyes. How much we miss because we have become too sophisticated. I remember my children’s eyes all alight with delight because one year there were about 6 Christmas trees in the church, each with its own set of flashing lights. The lights weren’t in sync and all I could think about was my aching head, not the wonder of so many trees and so many lights twinkling.

    We receive so much joy from watching our children’s delight. They really are a joy for us, and I am sure we are a similar joy for God.

    ” Can you take a leap of faith and ask your Father in heaven for the bread of His Presence, knowing He will not give you a stone?” What did Fr D’Elbee say? Something about not only asking but thanking God as if we have already received what we ask for. Have confidence! I’ve probably got that quote all in a muddle but never mind!

    Have a blessed Advent!

  14. It is truly a marvel how the Liturgical Year is so connected with the seasons. Christmas is the darkest time of the year and as the Word is made flesh, the light grows each and every day. And in the summer it is St. John the Baptist’s feast day which is also the day for the most daylight. How fitting that the one who said, “That he may increase and I may decrease,” would see its effect in the sun light decreasing.

  15. Waiting is so hard – for grown ups and children alike. At least in our home. Yet we practice doing so with faith, trust and delight as often as we can (forgiving ourselves when we fail to, just as we know our Lord forgives is!)

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