“Hope”

Tuesday, December 5

Rev. Barbara Callaghan, Minister 

“Advent is like the hush in a theater just before the curtain rises. It is like the hazy ring around the winter moon that means the coming of snow which will turn the night to silver. Soon.” Frederick Buechner, from The Hungering Dark

It can be difficult to sustain this moment of anticipation. Which is why most churches focus on all the Bible passages that teach about keeping watch, staying awake, and hanging on to hope in the weeks leading up to the first Sunday of Advent. But here we are, at the beginning of holding this space of anticipation and longing. And we are to focus this week on the hope that is needed to get us through until the wondrous event occurs – until the Child of God is finally given. Hope…

I don’t know about you, but at times, especially since the car accident that took my mom from my family and me far too soon, I am exhausted by the search for hope. It feels sometimes like scouring every nook and cranny of a dark room desperately hoping for, well, anything that might help.

I have found, again and again, that often when I stop trying so darn hard to figure out whatever it is I’m trying to figure out, or find whatever it is I am looking for, that that’s when something I need finds me. Such was the case this morning as I was trying to pray. I had no words and no direction it felt like, just longing, and a kind of sadness that is settling in these days that I have never known before. And that’s when something found me.

A clear image popped into my mind of a kind of translucent cracking cement with the faintest flicker of a light way down below the cracks. I felt as if God was saying to me, this is your heart, the light is still there, even if you can’t see it or feel or – even if you can’t believe it. Nothing changes the fact that the light is still there. And God reminded me how God is in the business of using cracks, or shining most brightly through our cracks, and that that is how eventually, we find hope again. That is how, eventually, we know we can indeed face tomorrow. That is how, eventually, we can hope one day we will even know joy again. This is the flicker of hope God showed me today. I hope it helps you find maybe more than a flicker, but rather a whole moonbeam of hope for you and those you love.

“There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in. That’s how the light gets in.” Leonard Cohen