Thursday, November 29, 2012

Hope that Burns Us

I love, love, love the planning and preparing for this season of Advent and Chanukah. I love the strings of lights, the glittery reflections on window glass and ornaments. I love the feel of the words that surround this season...
hope,
peace,
love,
redemption,
Messiah,
Yeshua,
chanukiah,
shamash...
 I want to wrap those words around myself like warm, downy blankets, their comforting sounds shushing the wails of grief, ever singing in my ears. Is it muffling grief? Is it balm to the wounds? I don't know. It helps. It eases the suffering.

A candle flickers in the Nativity scene in my entry room day and night. I light candles often in my house, for beauty, for remembrance, for prayers. I think of the seas of candles at candlelight vigils...at Christmas Eve church services...at Easter Eve at the Basilica. Especially, I think of the way we extinguish our candles at the Basilica when we hear of the death of Messiah and then we pound on the pews until one single light returns.

One single light.

The light of Yeshua. The one we Hope for this Advent. We are waiting for His return. When grief overflows in our hearts we beg.
Come, Yeshua. Come.
Come now.
Come save us.
We are done with this world. We pound on the pews. We stomp our feet. The noise builds to fill our ears. Darkness fills our eyes. Grief fills our throats.

Until that one tiny light returns. And gives light to the whole room. And our eyes flood with relief from the aching darkness. Our burning hands are still. Our tired feet can rest. Our cheeks are wet with the grief and the pain and the hope that burns us.

"And he sang to them, now in the Elven tongue, now in the speech of the West, until their hearts, wounded with sweet words, overflowed, and their joy was like swords, and they passed in thought out to regions where pain and delight flow together and tears are the very wine of blessedness." (from Tolkien's The Return of the King)

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