An Advent Message from Bp. Dillahunt

Bishop Suzanne Darcy Dillahunt southern ohio synod
Wait for the Lord, whose day is near.
Wait for the Lord: be strong take heart!”

(ELW 262 – Wait for the Lord)

Many of us struggle with the idea of waiting. We tend to think more along the lines of: “Let’s go! Let’s get it done! Let’s see what is happening next!”

Advent is truly a time of waiting and preparation for Christmas. This season says to us, “Don’t rush. Take time to look around and see creation. Take time to take a deep breath and breathe.”

Personally, I like Advent and I don’t like waiting, but I do like the opportunities and possibilities Advent gives us.

The Season of Advent holds up a mirror to us and says, “Wait, so that we can get ready for something. It’s not quite time; it’s not quite here yet. But, when it does come it is life changing.”

As many of you know, I had the honor of spending time with one of our global Companion Synods, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northern Germany, in late October. Advent is an important part of life in Germany, whether you are a member of the church or not.

As mentioned in a Facebook post on October 21st, the delegation visited Andere Zeiten (Another Time), a non-profit organization that writes Advent Calendars sharing stories, pictures, poems for those who don’t have spiritual or religious practices. We met people on our journey who know of this ministry and buy calendars for their friends and family.

Maybe it’s time we recapture the intent of Advent. Take the time to prepare yourselves for what’s coming next and don’t hurry it along; embrace the tension. In the midst of this season, create some time for waiting and preparation.

What’s coming next is wonderful; it is life changing. God has promised to dwell among us! Jesus, our Emanuel, is coming! Yay!

Throughout this Advent season, we pray together:
Stir up your power, Lord Christ and come.
Stir up our hearts, Lord God, to prepare the way of your only Son.
Stir up the wills of all who look to you, Lord God and strengthen our faith in your coming.
Stir up your power, Lord Christ and come.

In hope and expectation,
Bp. Suzanne Darcy Dillahunt

P.S.: Try something fun this Advent! Go find an Advent Calendar that speaks to your inner waiting/ There are lots out there from Scripture, to candy, to chocolate, to tea and coffee, to Legos, to socks. Go have some fun in the midst of your waiting and preparing.