Wednesday, October 19, 2005


I've never watched for the Advent. I'm not even sure if that's the right way to say it. Does one celebrate the Advent? Does one "do" the Advent? I don't know. I only know that I need to participate this year. I need to get an early start of it, too. I should have started today, when I longed for my pajamas at 4:00 pm, even though I didn't wake up until 2:00pm, wondering how I'll survive another winter. Or I can start right now, post chocolate binge, feeling bloated and ashamed. And the Orthodox Church doesn't even observe (?) Advent!

I read a lovely 15th century poem that appears in the book "Watch for the Light. Readings for Advent and Christmas." It's a great anthology, if you can find a copy. Here's the poem:

Lo, in the silent night
A child to God is born
And all is brought again
That ere was lost or lorn

Could but thy soul, O man,
Become a silent night!
God would be born in thee
And set all things aright.

I don't know about you, but my night seems very silent. As silent and dark and cold as that night so long ago when a teenaged girl gave birth to God. I don't hear angels singing though, not in my silent night. I don't draw shepherds or wise men bearing gifts, I just seem to be sitting here in the frigid dark, stuffing Hostess Ho Hos in my mouth. Hey that's ironic. No Santa, but I still get the ho ho hos.

But I digress.

In this moment, I'm out of chocolate. Most of the family is asleep, and I'm in my room alone typing. I sit here thinking of the poem, and silent nights without the calm and bright. How I am, as the poem says, both lost and lorn.

It's good to take a second, have a good, deep prayer infused breath, and remember the Child Begotten, not made of God. To cast my eyes toward Bethleham and sing my own song, softly, watching my breath pierce the black air with puffs of white moisture.

Breathing. In and out.

Waiting. Praying for patience.

Watching. For Sweet Jesus.

Looking for the sign.
A Child. A manger. A Star. A Savior born.
Born in me.
Setting all things wrong, aright.


In this quiet, still and black night.



Heather Diane Tipton said...


Kristine said...

We were both up in the middle of the night, longing for something, looking for more than we can see at the present moment. You were eating chocolate and I was making collages and drawing pictures. Maybe I could have made you a collage and you could have given me some of the chocolate. We could have had a pajama party of sorts. We could have filled the cold, dark silence with songs from the depths of our souls and we could have consoled one another whispering a reminder that God is here.

Bonnie Calhoun said...

Wow. I don't know how you get to be so profound, but keep it up. You make me think!

Mahogany-D said...

My dearest bestest friend,

How I mourn for you
How I grieve for you in your pain
How I hurt for you
Ache for you......with you

The gut wretching pain of what is to come
The bleakness of the winter
The sun fading away
Returning only months and months later

The grayness, the darkness
Don't let it consume you
Fight it
Run from it
Do NOT embrace it

Hold onto the SON
To shine on you
To carry you through the weary times
Until the SUN comes out again

In The Meantime (remember that book?)
Know that I love you
That I need
That I will never let you go into the grayness alone
I will hold your hand through it all
But remember whose hand holds you!

I love you with everything I have

Anonymous said...

I applaud you for being so open, so real, so honest. I, on the other hand, am a closet binger.

Dee said...

Claudia, Email me your address. Yesterday I received my Precious Times Magazine packet and I can mail you this quarter's issue. IT includes a great article about Advent. I celebrate Advent along with my church St. Philip AME in Atlanta, Georgia.

On another note last year I wrote an article for Precious Times about longing for love and allowing external forces to rob my spirit during the Holidays of what's most important-Christ. His love is unconditional. Doesn't care that I'm not a brick-Beyonce-house, or that I'm poor, single, mom, none-of-that. I feel God wants simplicity not only from you, but from me, too. It's been heavy in my spirit since July. Simplify. Give me your burdens. That's what the Holy Spirit is saying. We will make it to see what the end's gon' be, people, Claudia. We will...
God bless and keep you.

Eudoxia, a lover of the Lord said...

Thank you, Sister, for reminding of what I'd forgotten...that God is always waiting to burst in upon the world and our lives. My husband and I have had a pretty rough couple of weeks -- we moved to FL because of a job offer that was reneged upon once we arrived; we ran out of money despite bringing lots of it and have only $19 left for food and gas for the next two weeks, our only funds in the world. We are doing all we can, but, alas, have been so concerned with our immediate needs that Advent, the Nativity, and God Himself has been forgotten.

Your writing is beautiful and always lifts my spirit, and none more than today. Blessings.

upwords said...


Gina Holmes said...

Amen. Hey, when did you go all pink? Cute and love your definition of a ragamuffin diva. I'd love to have a poet in me like you do in you.

PenguinBoy said...

Love your blog! I just had to drop you a comment to let you kow that I ordered my wife the same set of Anglican Prayer Beads that your husband ordered you for Valentine's Day. Cyd, at Full Circle Beads, FedEx'd them today and I should get them by Friday. I ordered myself a some made of African jade.

Go in peace...serve the Lord!

Lorna said...

great post :)

God is here and he is coming. Advent is a wonderful time of year - if we let it !

be blessed