Monday evening I left a restaurant, headed for a meeeting. On the way to my car I walked by the front of a dry cleaning store. Through the window I could see a woman sitting behind the counter. She was just sitting as far as i could tell – nothing to read; no hand work; no music as far as I could hear. She did not appear to be very happy. She was waiting. Waiting for the next customer. And her waiting made me think about the waiting that is part of Advent.
One could say that in her waiting this woman was “ready” for the appearance of her next visitor, and that is true I suppose. And for me, it is also true that part of the waiting in Advent is to spend time doing “nothing”, being attentive, listening and watching for God’s activity in my life and the world. But the waiting of Advent is more than that I believe. Part of our waiting is to attend to the present, the joys and sorrows that mark our lives and the lives of those around us. My waiting will include being with a parishoner whose father died this morning. if John the Baptizer is any guide, our waiting may also include some taking stock of the direction we are headed with our lives.
I pray the woman behind the counter was happier than she seemed. And I pray our waiting is rich this Advent.