Friday, December 11, 2020

Tendency and Tension

This year, I’ve relied a lot on being inspired by what I run across—books, articles, poems, songs. I didn’t set aside time to collect things the way I have in years past. And that’s ok. I’ve been able to write more this year than any other. But tonight I wanted to share some poetry. So I put on some choral music and went hunting. This is what I found. The first isn’t strictly a poem, but it’s close. They speak to the tension that is the Advent season. They speak to our tendency to shy away from the very things that will help us find our way.

The disappointment, brokenness, suffering, and pain that characterize life in this present world is held in dynamic tension with the promise of future glory that is yet to come. In that Advent tension, the church lives its life.

- Fleming Rutledge, Advent: The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ

Toward the Light

Too often our answer to the darkness
is not running toward Bethlehem
but running away.
We ought to know by now that we can’t see
where we’re going in the dark.

Running away is rampant… separation is stylish:
separation from mates, from friends, from self.
Run and tranquilize,
don’t talk about it, avoid.
Run away and join the army of those who have already run away.

When are we going to learn that Christmas Peace
comes only when we turn and face the darkness?
Only then will we be able to see The Light of the World.

-Ann Weems, Kneeling in Bethlehem

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