It reminds us that the time is near for the coming of Our Lord. He comes quietly in the night as a babe in a manger. He is not the warrior King that was hoped for by the Jewish people so long ago. No, He comes as the Prince of Peace.
For today I am reminded that in my grieving that there is space for Joy. There is time to play Christmas music in the background as Michael rests in his new hospital bed. There is time to bake biscotti with Cynthia while he slumbers.
The words of today's first reading resounded in me:
Let the wilderness and the dry-lands exult,
let the wasteland rejoice and bloom,
let it bring forth flowers like the jonquil,
let it rejoice and sing for joy.
The glory of Lebanon is bestowed on it,
the splendour of Carmel and Sharon;
they shall see the glory of the Lord,
the splendour of our God.
Strengthen all weary hands,
steady all trembling knees
and say to all faint hearts,
‘Courage! Do not be afraid.
‘Look, your God is coming,
vengeance is coming,
the retribution of God;
he is coming to save you.’
Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
the ears of the deaf unsealed,
then the lame shall leap like a deer
and the tongues of the dumb sing for joy
for those the Lord has ransomed shall return.
They will come to Zion shouting for joy,
everlasting joy on their faces;
joy and gladness will go with them
and sorrow and lament be ended.
So as I sit in my wasteland I am reminded that my God is coming! There will be an end to sorrow and lamenting. There will be everlasting Joy!
Let us pause in our grieving and Lamentations to lift our hearts with joy to God. For truly He is our Hope and our Salvation.