Advent is a fantastic time leading up to the wonder of Christmas morning. I love everything about Advent – the preparation, the prayerful waiting, the baking, the readings at Mass, the lighting of the Advent candles, decorating. I love the joyful anticipation. But, I must admit, I also love the tinge of melancholy that accompanies the preparing for Christmas. I love the deep soul-searching that comes from asking myself whether I am ready for Christ to be born in my heart, whether I am ready to be a bearer of Christ to the world. I try to be realistic about the parts of myself that are holding me back from being a source of light, the parts of myself that are not filled with love.
Because I value the heart-preparation that is part of Advent, I love songs that hold a touch of melancholy. I want to share a song that helps me to think about the parts of myself that need to change if I want to be ready to celebrate the coming of Christ into the world.
This song calls me to be more prayerful, to look at how I am living, to thank God for the blessings I have received, and to leave my sinful behaviors behind.
Down in the garden where flowers grow in ranks
Down on your bended knees and give the lord thanks
Down on your knees and pray both night and day
Leave off your sins and live upright, I pray
This Advent season, I have learned a lot about myself. Grace has done a lot to make my heart open to the beauty in the world. I have reached a point where I can put a lot of negativity behind me and I am ready to expect a positive outcome to any situation. I am so aware that God is at work in the world and that I can trust that good will win in the end. I am eager to do my part to make the world more beautiful. For me, it has been a hard Advent but a fruitful Advent. Soon, we will celebrate the coming of Light into the world. Soon, it will be Christmas day. Soon, our eyes will be opened. Soon, we will see grace revealed to us in new and beautiful ways.
Christmas is now drawing near at hand
Come serve the lord and be at his command
And God a portion for you will provide
And give a blessing to your soul beside