Oh Lord, purify me, make me a chalice in which you dwell, offer your sacrifice in me and spread your love through me. Let me shine like gold, adorn me with the jewels of virtue that I may always be open to you. Fill me. Overflow me. Let me be like that most perfect vessel, the Singular Vessel of Devotion, She to whom I cry for protection against the Evil One. I ask this for your glory, for the vessel is nothing without the sustenance inside, the cup nothing unless it is filled. Oh Lord, purify me.

Give me a word, Abba

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Advent in Brief

One of the sorry situations in which I find myself is College Finals in the Fall Semester. This is not because I don't like Finals. I actually, strangely, like exams. The problem is when is inadvertantly conflicts with my observance of the great season of Advent. Advent is about waiting, about silence and about desire. It's quite hard to wait for something when plumbing and ducts are loudly pushing any thought of the Coming of Christ from your brain. (Yes, that is what I was taking a final about this semester.) It's quite hard to collect your thoughts and store them away so that your brain can rest in the silence of anticipation when the whole University is seething with quiet frustration about That Last Paper. It's quite hard to feel any sort of desire for the source of Peace when your own restless heart is dullened by tension and strife over packing up for the semester.

And yet, I'm almost glad that Finals sort of shuffled its dirty feet all over my Advent because now there's so little time before Christmas and if I don't get my own feet moving, spiritually speaking, I shan't have prepared at all. I really feel the need to buckle down and look to the East for inspiration now that I've almost run out time.

And that's also how I generally feel about finals too. I am able to accomplish much more when pressed for time. I need to have pressure over my head in order to realize what actually needs to get done. Call me lazy and you'll be right.

But all throughout this semester, I could feel that there was something that I was missing, some way that I was failing to look forward to Christ's coming, some way that I was turning from The East. And Advent is the perfect opportunity to figure out what that is. For me, it has so be something concrete that reminds me of the East and of the source of Joy. It has to be some sort of practice that can remind me of the rhythm of the Eternal Song.

And so perhaps my Advent hasn't been the most complete, but there never can be a perfect Advent, and for me, having a sort of abbreviated Advent, while not being ideal, certainly has helped me to discover the season all over again. To experience the desire.

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