Sunday, December 10, 2006

Advent musings

We are human and finite, and thus cannot live perpetually in a sense of expectation, or in a continuous Advent. We are distracted by many things. Our spiritual awareness waxes and wanes in intensity. If an attitude of expectancy, or an inclination to poignant spiritual experiences, is cultivated by conscious effort of our own, we will suffer severe limitations. Such effort totally misses the mark. We may get lifted up in moments of tenderness but will be cast down in hours of dryness. The swing of emotions is natural to us, and some are more subject to extremes than others. We mustn't despair about this. But we should be aware of cultivating religious emotions under the delusion that these are the workings of the Holy Spirit. Such emotions are unstable; they risk getting in the way of our communion with God.

It is here that we need to see why it was necessary for Christ to come to the earth. God has come to us because we, by our own power of soul, by our own emotions, even the noblest and most sublime, can never attain redemption, can never regain communion with God.

True expectancy, the waiting that is genuine and from the heart, is brought about by the coming of the Holy Spirit, by God coming to us, and not by our own devices.

My response: PHEW!

From Yielding to God by Philip Britts, found in:

Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas

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