Sunday 2 December 2018

#Pause for Advent 1 - Sunday 2nd December

The Light and The Dark

Pause in Advent

I've joined the blogging group for Advent again; a random fellowship of people putting up as Advent post for each of the Sundays in Advent.

We have been gathered together by Angela Almond, of  If you go over to her site, you will see the list of 'Pausers' on the right on her home page.

So, what to write? I've been thinking about that all week. There were several clues...

I started reading the Book of the month for our church Bible Reading Book Club - which happens to be John's Gospel. You know, the bit that has

 'And the light shineth in darkness and the darkness comprehended it not'

Last Monday, I glanced out of the window of the little room where I had been teaching piano all afternoon. Without my realising it, the sky had clouded over and it was raining. Dusk had come early, and although it was only half past three the parents waiting in the playground were just dark shapes, scattered about in small groups, hardly distinguishable in the gloom. Night was falling, at half past three!

I felt a theme developing...

Today's picture in the Advent book I am reading ('The Art of Advent' by Jane Williams)  is Holman Hunt's 'The Light of the World'.

File:Hunt Light of the World.jpg
There is so much to see in this picture. Thanks to the wonders of computers you can zoom in on the details. I'd never noticed how overgrown the door is.

Up to now I'd always 'read' the painting as Jesus knocking on the door, to see if I/we/you would let him in - that's because of the title, of course;

 Revelation3:20: "Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me"

Then I suddenly thought - what if he was inviting us to come out - to leave our fusty, cosy, confined little den and join in him the Great Outdoors Adventure? Or maybe just have a picnic somewhere. Is that sunrise - vanquishing the dark night - and not an ominously deepening twilight as I've always assumed?

I'm hoping that the door will open inwards, so that whoever is inside doesn't have to heave against all those plants, but can just push past and see what the new day will bring.

Finally, This morning, I read the collect for today from my old-fashioned prayer book;

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious Majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.

That seemed to be a confirmation that this first week of Advent will be, for me, a time to think about the Coming of the Light and the Defeat of the Dark.

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