An Advent Sunday Morning

As I write this it is the first Sunday morning of Advent.  It’s foggy and ugly outside my Starbucks window, but I live in Minnesota so I know snow is right around the corner which makes me so happy.

I’m an early morning person, but I know many are just now lumbering, hustling, shivering, or springing out of bed.  Some to get kids dressed and combed.  Some, bumping around a dark empty house or apartment alone.  Getting ready for worship.

Some will be driving to church with an attitude of habitual going-through-the-motions resignation.

But for me…and for most I think, there is always a glimmer of expectation.  As small as a twinkle light, but it’s there for sure.  A tiny bit of hope that we’ll meet God in that worship space and hear a whisper from Him.

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How do You Right-size?

I love the story of Teddy Roosevelt who used to take his friends outside at night, look up at the stars and recite the wonders of God’s creation.

Marveling at the Milky Way, the searching out the spiral Galaxy of Andromeda…

After awhile he would say, “Now I think we’re small enough.  Let’s go to bed!”

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Three Minutes of Wonder

When I saw this it blew me away.

Who knew?  How did God create that tiny creature and teach him to do...that???

Last night John and I were eating dinner on the patio and he said “Isn’t it cool the way the sunlight is hitting the leaves of that tree?”  Not a typical remark from him, but it was just another reminder of how we usually rush by the tiny sparkling bits of God-wonder revealed even right in front of us.  Not hidden underground even.

Today is alive, twirling like a little girl in her glittery  candy pink dress-up gown and tiara, just waiting for us to notice.

May you have a weekend of noticing and hearing the holy whisper of God in creation say, “Here I am.”

What of God’s creation are you “wondering” at this weekend?

Hunting Caterpillars

Hunting caterpillars with my daughters – Heather H.                                                            Last ride on the Ferris Wheel – Mary Jo S.                                                                                   A goodnight text – Katie M.                                                                                                         Swan Lake performed by a 7 year old in a tutu. Nanisa S.                                                 Stomping through puddles – Dana F.

I always love reading the answers to “What do you stay awake for?” at Caribou.  They move me and remind me of how important it is to stop.  And pay attention.  And be present to the wonder that’s right in front of me.

Like a snuggle with my girls when they were toddlers and nothing else could possibly be more important…not the news of Clinton’s affair, or the war in the Gulf, or the latest development between Ross and Rachel on Friends.

The distractions are different now, but they’re still there…the things that threaten to keep me from missing my real life.  And missing the wonder of God’s good gifts.

Now my babies are grown and I come back to the town where we grew up together.  Where we delighted in walks around the wetlands and seeing the baby goslings each spring, and watching them turn into awkward ugly teenager geese.

Where we measured and marked the girls’ height each year on a wall in the basement and we marveled at all the other things that couldn’t be measured, like hope and character, and faith.

A friend of mine says, “I want to be counted among those easily impressed.”  I agree.  I want to be awake to wonder and live a life marked with gratitude.

So, today, I guess I’m thinking about turning off, well, everything…and paying attention to the sun on my face, and giving gentle and strong hugs and really seeing and being thankful for the dewy green shoots pushing through the winter earth,  and making sure those I love know it.

Consider getting on your knees tonight and reviewing your day with thanksgiving.  And then maybe send someone a good-night text. 🙂

What wonders are you noticing?  What are you grateful for today?