Advent 2011 :: Day 1

by Brian Walsh

Advent is for people who have an aching longing in their hearts.

Advent is not for people who have arrived,
for people who have nothing to wait for because they’ve already got it all.
Advent is not for people who are satisfied,
for people who find the status quo of their lives to be just fine.
Advent is not for the self-righteous,
for those who do not blush in the face of their own shame.

No, Advent is for people who have an aching longing in their hearts.

Advent people wait because somehow they long for a better world,
a world where justice and peace might kiss,
a world in which broken relationships are healed,
a world in which shame is swallowed up in forgiveness,
a world where the first will be last and the last will be first.

Without this aching longing in our hearts,
we miss Advent.
Without waiting,
we miss Advent.
Without crying out “how long?”,
we miss Advent.

Isaiah speaks of a time when we will be called,
“the city of righteousness,
the faithful city.”

Can you imagine such a thing?
Can you imagine an urban life suffused with righteousness?
Can you imagine a city that can be called “faithful?”

Perhaps not.

But maybe such language can awaken in us a longing for something
that is beyond all that we can ask or imagine.

Maybe such language can invite us into Advent.

Brian Walsh
Brian is an activist theologian, a retired CRC campus minister, the founder of the Wine Before Breakfast community, and farms with Sylvia Keesmaat at Russet House Farm.He engages issues of theology and culture, and has written a couple of books you might want to check out. His most recent offering is cowritten with Sylvia Keesmaat and entitled Romans Disarmed: Resisting Empire, Demanding Justice.

Leave a Reply