fourth week of advent
The liturgical color of Advent is blue; the night sky just before the dawn. As our Advent pilgrimage draws to a close, let us pray now - harder than ever - that God's love might be born in our hearts, in our homes, and in every corner of God's good earth.
Four Candles for Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love
“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” + John 13:34-35
Holy God, through ancient scripture, you whisper in our ears: “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.” May your perfect love be born in our lives during this season of waiting and watching, so that we might have the courage to set out, hand-in-hand with you, and love this beautiful, broken, trembling world back to life. Amen.
Over the course of the week, with as much courage as you can muster, declare these affirmations of faith:
Monday: “I believe in a Word that punctures the shadows of despair, flooding everything with light and hope: that word is LOVE.”
Tuesday: “I believe in a Word that pulls peace out of violence, life out of death, and laughter out of mourning, crying, and pain: that word is LOVE.”
Wednesday: “I believe in a Word that breaks the silence of evil, exposes the hiddenness of sin, and shakes the settled foundations of ignorance: that word is LOVE.”
Thursday: “I believe in a Word that reaches into suffering and loneliness with comfort and care: that word is LOVE.”
Friday: “I believe in a Word that speaks a whole new creation into being, calls each one of us by name, and asks us to take part in heaven come to earth: that word is LOVE.”
If you want, the Virgin will come walking down the road pregnant with the holy saying, “I need shelter for the night, please take me inside your heart, my time is so close.”
Then, under the roof of your soul, you will witness the sublime intimacy, the divine, the Christ taking birth forever, as she grasps your hand for help, for each of us is the midwife of God, each of us. + St. John of the Cross (1542-1591)
Cheers to Stefan Perneborg for capturing this flower as it proclaims the hope and mystery of Advent!