Sunday, December 4, 2011

Seeing the Signs

After it wakes us up, Advent calls for us to see and discern critically

“At every turn in the Christmas story there appears an absurd mismatch: a woman and a dragon, a babe and the kings of this world, a messiah of utter folly and the power of death. But that is precisely the method that God has chosen in the Incarnation. God risks everything on the power of powerlessness.”

The topic of Christmas is whether we have the eyes to see it. And the heart to follow. Many did not recognize God’s coming to them in Jesus. But some did. Christmas has to do with seeing the signs, with recognition, with discerning God’s presence in the world.”

“As William Stringfellow said, ‘Discerning signs does not seek spectacular proofs or await the miraculous, but, rather, it means sensitivity to the Word of God indwelling in all Creation and transfiguring common history, while remaining radically realistic about death’s vitality in all that happens.’ Lord, for such a comprehension in this season and all, grant us the heart!”

— Bill Wylie Kellerman in Seasons of Faith and Conscience

For contemplation:

What do we see?

How do we see?

At how many levels and from which different angles dare we perceive?

I am struck by the widely varied responses to the Occupy movement. Our reactions or responses reveal what we are able or willing to see in our society and ourselves, it seems to me.

God, help me see more fully--both what is sabotaging community and the grace that is reweaving it--and not forget or neglect to act here and now in anticipation of what is possible and shall surely be for all who long for your appearing.

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