This year, I have been doing something that I have never done before, celebrating Advent all December. I have a book with daily Advent readings that I am reading (The Greatest Gift by Ann Voskamp). Additionally, my fellow students and I met most evenings the last few weeks to sit in the dark around a candle, listening to Advent readings and silence, praying, and singing.
Advent, a time of waiting for the coming of Christ, has caused me to sympathize more greatly with the Jewish nation who waited for the Messiah. Why? Because I too am still waiting for the fulfillment of God’s promise.
Still waiting for the crooked places to be made straight, the injustices of this world to be resolved.
Still waiting for the rough places to be made plain, the ugly happenings of life to somehow have purpose.
Still waiting for peace on Earth in my soul full of unanswered questions.
Because the old adage is true, “The more you know, the more you realize you don’t know.” Studying science, history, psychology, teaching, and writing incited more questions inside me than I know what to do with, more questions than I knew lay buried in my soul.
Questions like these. “What is to be done when what would be written is not what must be?” “Does God ever change His Mind?” “What should Christians do if science proves that homosexuality is genetic?” “What should a woman do when she finds a warrior’s defensive heart within her?”
The Jewish nation waited generations through years of childlessness, years of promises broken by men they trusted, years of hiding in the wilderness, years of captivity, and four hundred years of silence. And when the answer came, they didn’t recognize Him. So many had an idea and looked for the ideal, not Him. Because when we choose the answer we want, we risk missing the answer with us in Emmanuel.
I’m still waiting and watching.
The world’s still waiting and searching for that moment when all flesh shall see it together.
Still trusting that Emmanuel, God with us, is worthy of that trust. For in that trust, we find that not needing to know the answers–but knowing Him Who does–is the real Peace on Earth, the true “Joy to the World,” for “hopes and fears of all the years are met in Thee.