Second Sunday of Advent.
The second candle symbolizes peace.
Peace is so fitting right now, I find (as I am sure you all do too) that Christmas season, which should be the most peaceful of all, often isn’t. I spent a lot of time around the city this week, waiting in lines, waiting for kids to settle, waiting for my coffee to be made, waiting with abated breath for people to stop moving. And stop rushing from everywhere to everywhere else. It’s as if Christmas is the ticket to speed up, get out of control, and be justified doing so.
But lack of peace is so much more than the busyness of the season. I’ve found, with some experiences, that there can be some really hard circumstances that make it hard to find the peace of this second week of Christmas. Oftentimes, people share how they are simply not at peace. I find I am not the most equipped person to deal with other people’s hurts or concerns very eloquently or even say things that directly reflect my heart… I mean, I am hardly comfortable hugging people so it is hard when someone is struggling for peace because it so mirrors my own soul. So I just ruminate on it; and pray… because our burdens are small compared to the love that encompasses us. We’re seeking instant-gratification, often manifested by impatience, which can suffocate the peace that should be resting inside.
The dictionary defines peace as the separation or distance from anything that causes strife or pain; it’s serenity and silence. Silence. Maybe that’s why it is so hard to hold onto, peace, because it only takes a drop of water or a gust of wind to break the silence. If that’s all it takes, that I can see why school or health or family or fear can take over and replace the peace in our hearts. But as I consider the notion that we all spend a little more time in silence, the more we may slow in peace. The longer it’s quiet, the more we get used to it…and I am convinced, the more we’ll miss it when it’s gone. The better acquainted we may get with this peace, the more real it becomes. And like our hope, we need to share it. I have a deep and persistent yearning for that peace… not just for myself but those whom I love who need that peace right now… the settling of hearts and silencing of fear.
The quiet surrender of our souls.
Can you feel it? We’re being held; we’ve got more than enough to step into the silence and embrace a bit of peace.
grace and peace,
[adapted from d.08]