This is a word that is, perhaps, more relevant and in front of us than could have been
anticipated or imagined. Maybe we heard it from home, or from the Boy Scouts "Be Prepared" first.
Definitions include "equip or furnish," "make ready," , and "make ready beforehand for some purpose, use or activity." More recently they have come to include "Watch for cold and flu season" (fast forward to pandemic) and "meditation and mindfulness." TImes may change but the essence continues from preparing a meal to preparing for battle. And as significant as preparing for a
Advent is a time of preparation for an expectant Mary waiting to celebrate Jesus' arrival. Mary and Joseph prepared. Mary was both expectant and waiting as they journeyed to Bethlehem. We can only imagine what they encountered, and the other lives that were changed on a day like no other before or after.
And so to the present anew.
What can WE do to prepare this Advent, so different and strange:
physically untethered from church, family gatherings, blissfully singing together, tending to those in need or alone -- and so many others? Perhaps prepare Advent Calendars, make prepared gifts and meals that can be distributed. Call someone you haven't spoken to in a while and see what happens. (It usually works). We can pray, fill our hearts with joy and prepare to reclaim the light that will return with the grace of God. So prepare to sit back and your soul will tell you how much in this unusual year you are repaired because you prepared in ways known and unknown.
The blessings of Bethlehem await you.
- Dalen Cole