Peace in Our Watching
Dear Kaleid Ladies,
Blessings on this second Sunday of Advent.
Kaleid emails are coming to you on Sundays right now because we are considering the four soul-filling words of Advent that make space in our hearts for Jesus’ arrival. These words, and the candles we light as we name them, help us to remember that God has come, God is here, and God will come again. In this now-but-not-yet season, our souls can be re-oriented in grateful, expectant, humble ways.
Today we light the Peace candle.
Peace matters being human involves dissonance, discord, and distrust. Anxiety is related to our need to protect ourselves from these things. We hold our breath at life’s “what ifs,” and we spend relentless, diffuse energy trying to stave off the unsettling effects of being human.
Peace is God’s first word to human hearts again and again in the Scriptures, a word that quiets a heart enough to be able to hear whatever message follows.
Do not fear.
When God turns toward us, his gift is peace. As we look at God looking at us, we unwrap the gift of peace.
The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.
Advent invites us to enter Christian peace by encouraging us to keep watch…a kind of watching that is present and expectant.
To cultivate a posture of watching, where we expect to encounter God, means slowing down. In slowing, we notice where we are, and we meet God the only place we can—in the present moment.
When we feel the inevitable anxiety of being human, we can connect with God’s gift of peace by watching, by stopping to gaze at the face that is already gazing at us. As we enter the sacredness of the present and as we recognize God’s kind regard for us, we find that we open our hands in release and our hearts in acceptance.
Peace. Now we can hear what word is next for us and for the world.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Not as the world gives, not the victor’s peace,
Not to be fought for, hard-won, or achieved,
Just grace and mercy, gratefully received:
An undeserved and unforeseen release,
As the cold chains of memory and wrath
Fall from our hearts before we are aware,
Their rusty locks all picked by patient prayer,
Till closed doors open, and we see a path
Descending from a source we cannot see;
A path that must be taken, hand in hand,
Only by those, forgiving and forgiven,
Who see their saviour in their enemy.
So reach for me. We’ll cross our broken land,
And make each other bridges back to Heaven.
The Kaleid Team
P.S. Here are some verses on peace for you.