Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Bundled Up

He said, “Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of sheer silence. 13 When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave.  (1 Kings 19:11-13)
It struck me yesterday that the passage above is in some ways an Advent passage. It's not about the coming of Christ, of course, but it is about waiting and watching for God.  It's about patience and expectation.

Elijah (who is the character in the passage) has run away to the wilderness.  In these verses, he is told to stand and wait.  I read this morning that wait and hope have the same root word in Hebrew.  Elijah, like us, is waiting and hoping for God. 

In this busy time of year, we wait in anticipation to find God. There is much to be seen around us - distractions from what we are looking for.  

Frederick Buechner writes, "The Salvation Army Santa Claus clangs his bell. The sidewalks are so crowded you can hardly move. Exhaust fumes are the chief fragrance in the air, and everybody is as bundled up against any sense of what all the fuss is really about as they are bundled up against the wind chill factor."

Could it be that we are too focused on the wind, the earthquakes, and the fire - and maybe that is intentional?

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