The second week of Advent, and it seems everywhere I go, I get asked one of two questions:
first: the old rubric that all ministers (priests/pastors/vicars) seem to get “this must be your busy time”
second: the one that always makes me laugh, and bite me tongue: “What are you doing for Christmas?”
among our bloggers this week there is a thread of similar thoughts, on busy-ness and life and death and the kindness of others.

Writing in Advent Journal, Milt reflects on the Understatement of the verse: “the days were accomplished that she should be delivered” yeah – because birth really is that simple!! He gives us a lovely reflection to savour.
at the other end of the spectrum, two posts caught my eye which both, in different ways contemplate death.
Kathryn, writing at Good in Parts, is blogging through Advent, I would recommend you read all her posts, as I found them inspiring, but if you do have the time then read Considering Collects, which reflects on the Collect (daily prayer) for Wednesday, and on three significant funerals they are conducting this week in Coventry Cathedral. Plus, the definition of the word succour – which utterly delighted me!
Seeker is another blogger with a reflection every day through Advent; on Tuesday she posted about the word Go, and reflected on what it means – to travel, to let go, to let go of life… I could have picked any of this week’s reflections really, but this one really struck a chord.

I have two more picks for you this week; one about a Christmas Tree, and the other about snow causing us to slow…
I live in a tiny village, and general we need to travel for just about everything. Marguerite, writing at Standing on the Side of Love, shares her experience of buying her Christmas Tree in her small town; as she was wondering how to get it home, she heard the assistant say, “can we deliver that for you?”, in that moment, knowing she was known, cared for, was just the One Small Thing to be thankful for.
Joy, writes at Chaplainhood; watching snow falling she wrote her poem Blankets of Slow; yes, slow, not snow!! For simply allowing the snow to allow us to slow things down – I am very grateful.

In this second week of Advent, as the crazy gets a bit crazier, and the lists longer, and the days fewer, I pray you might be able to take a moment and breathe, and slow, and let go awhile.

 

I managed it on Monday with a day trip to the sea…

IMG_1233
Brodick Beach, Isle of Arran (c) JREN2018

Julie Rennick is a Church of Scotland minister, serving a rural community in the village of Earlston in the Scottish Borders. She blogs at A Country Girl, writes for Spill the Beans and contributed to the RevGals book, There’s a Woman in the Pulpit


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One thought on “Friday Festival

  1. My FB post today, reflecting on my children’s’ very busy lives and mine not so busy now.
    About ten years ago a friend in Seattle, a mother, lamented that her adult children were not in touch, or called infrequently…but she described it this way: “at first as a mother (or father or one who fills those roles) you are up on stage with them then as they get older you are moved to seats farther and farther back until you are pretty much in the last row. That brings sadness and loss…and we have to figure out how to deal with it, often with other mothers.” That seems like an excellent analogy and is no doubt universal: you want them to be independent adults and yet you miss that closeness, like when you were up on stage, maybe holding their hands, giving them courage. Of course you want them as adults to have their own courage. Although you allow yourself to want that connection the love continues as a given, no matter what. I did not call my mother regularly until she was in her 70s. I wonder now if she was lonely. She was always so happy to hear from me and all of us. Such is the natural arc of life. It’s a mix.

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