wearyworldrejoice iconThe hustle and bustle of the season is here, and while advent is about waiting, we don't seem to intentionally do much of that these days.  In fact, most of us have patience that grows thin when waiting in line, waiting for test results, and waiting for our adult children to recognize that we are aging, not helpless.  We wait for cease fires, for safe places for our children and grandchildren, and for families to be together.

We grow weary - weary of not having enough, being enough, and wanting enough for all those we love.  "O Lord, how long?"

It is in the midst of this weariness that we realize joy is not the same as happiness.  We can be both weary and joyful at the same time.  The Gospel of Luke tells Jesus' birth narrative parallel to the story of Elizabeth and Zechariah.  As we read the text, we find the fullness of human emotions wrapped into the story.  During this season, don't we too find (and exhibit) a wide range of emotions?  People experience fear, isolation, connection, joy, sadness, and more during this season and scripture isn't much different.  Zechariah is weary and seeks clarity by asking, "How will I know this to be so?"  I don't hear a lot of hope in that question.  As we read the scripture, we find him unable to speak to the crowd.  The crowd interprets this as a lack of hope.  Now what?

Psalm 80 provides some insight.  Pray for restoration.  Through restoration, we see that there is light at the end of the weary tunnel of darkness.  The restoration that God brings gives us the ability to be joy-filled even through our weariness.  God's light is shining, bringing about hope, peace, joy, love - and patience.  May we join God this season.

Pastor Jen