Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Joyful Expectancy

Tuesday of the First Week of Advent

In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;
early in the morning I make my appeal and watch for you. Psalm 5:3

It is dark when I awake, but not as cold as it has been. I find it easier to arise, knowing that I won’t be chilled to the very bone before I make it to the bathroom. Even so, it is the morning discipline of prayer tugging at me that compels me to place my feet on the floor.

I am really not a morning person. But in a home shared with spouse and daughters, I find my solitude by being the first one up. When my daughters were young, I needed the quiet time to bolster myself for the onslaught of diapers and dressing and the gathering whirlwind that would inevitably push us all out the door into our day ahead, ready or not. Now, as the members of our household fend for themselves, I discover that Morning Prayer is not a survival tool, but something richer. Grounding in the daily course of scripture, prayer, and stillness before God prepares me to be watchful.

The watchfulness of Advent is a practice. It is not about exhaustive wakefulness or restless anxiety, but rather the exercise of joyful expectancy. And as I head into my day, the joy begins to unfold: an early morning email of encouragement from a far away friend, a hug and an “I love you” from my teenage daughter, a gorgeous fall leaf pressed into a letter. 

God is with us. God does accompany me on my day. Or rather I accompany God. Or it’s both and. The more I practice watchfulness, the more I see God in the daily.

Copyright Anne E. Kitch 2013