Monday, December 10, 2012

Expectant in Bethlehem: Monday of the Second Week of Advent

Show me your ways, O LORD,
   and teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
   for you are the God of my salvation;
   in you have I trusted all the day long. 
   Psalm 25:3-4

It is chaos.  I had volunteered to bring the cake. This will be easy, I think. I order the cake from the grocery store. I pick it up. I bring it along with the necessary paper plates, plastic forks, and cutting knife. I drop it off. Then, I prepare to leave.

“Aren’t you going to stay and cut the cake?” the other mother asks. She has organized this party for 80 some kids. She is much braver than I am. I had been planning to contribute, and then escape. After all, several other parents have volunteered to work the party.

“I’m no good at cutting cake,” I explain. This is actually true. It would seem that cutting a sheet cake into reasonably sized, beautifully rectangular portions is a straightforward task. I’ve seen it done. But somehow I missed the parenting class on proper cake cutting. Nevertheless, I find myself stationed at the cake table surrounded by excessively eager children. “Those are big slices,” another parent observes as I awkwardly attack my task. I cannot keep up and begin to lose my confidence and composure. I spy another parent across the room, one of the calmest and most good-natured people I know. Bordering on desperation, I beckon to him, surrender the knife, and escape.

In the middle of the wildness and wilderness of the party, I want to cry out, “Make a path, clear the way, get me out of here!” Where is John the Baptist when you need him? But the way of God is not made smooth for our escape. The way is made smooth to welcome our salvation. Show me the way, O God. Teach me to walk in the wildness of my everyday life, and discover the path that leads to the Messiah I await.

copyright © Anne E. Kitch 2012