When I was visiting in the hospital last week, I overheard two nurses speaking to each other outside in the hall.
“There’s been a lot happening this morning, hasn’t there!” said one nurse. “I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed” “Yes, I know what you mean,” said the other, “There’s been a lot.”And the first nurse reached over and put her hand on the other’s arm – just for a moment. “Ok,” she said, “That’s ok. Let’s keep going.”
It was just a tiny moment in two people’s days, and yet that tiny moment has stayed me over the last week.
There is a lot going on at the moment! We have dear friends who are sick and in hospital. We have dear friends who are having treatment or nearing the end of treatment. We have dear friends and family who are grieving for loved ones. We have an association experiencing great turmoil. We have people in need of accommodation. People who need financial help following the floods, or in Indonesia or the Horn of Africa or the Ukraine.
There is a lot going on at the moment.
Perhaps we need to take that moment, like those nurses did, to acknowledge it, to reach for the presence of another who will acknowledge it – and help us find the strength to keep going.
What has helped me this week is re-reading this Advent poem – reminding myself of undergirding reality of our lives – Jesus the light of the world.
Let us take a moment to affirm that reality with humility, with joy, with faith and with courage!
Advent Credo by Allan Boesak
It is not true that creation and the human family are doomed to destruction and loss—
This is true: For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life;
It is not true that we must accept inhumanity and discrimination, hunger and poverty, death and destruction—
This is true: I have come that they may have life, and that abundantly.
It is not true that violence and hatred should have the last word, and that war and destruction rule forever—
This is true: Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder, his name shall be called wonderful councilor, mighty God, the Everlasting, the Prince of peace.
It is not true that we are simply victims of the powers of evil who seek to rule the world—
This is true: To me is given authority in heaven and on earth, and lo I am with you, even until the end of the world.
It is not true that we have to wait for those who are specially gifted, who are the prophets of the Church before we can be peacemakers—
This is true: I will pour out my spirit on all flesh and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions and your old men shall have dreams.
It is not true that our hopes for liberation of humankind, of justice, of human dignity of peace are not meant for this earth and for this history—
This is true: The hour comes, and it is now, that the true worshipers shall worship God in spirit and in truth.
So let us enter Advent in hope, even hope against hope. Let us see visions of love and peace and justice. Let us affirm with humility, with joy, with faith, with courage: Jesus Christ—the life of the world.