Anticipation or Completion?

Advent is a time of anticipation. We celebrate completion on Easter.  Christmas day is sort of a completion—the celebration of Jesus’ birth. Even that birth is pure anticipation.

The question for us lies in whether we can live in anticipation.

Tension hovers thickly in the atmosphere. Living with tension requires developing a tolerance for uncertainty. It means living a day at a time. Sometimes an hour at a time. Living looking forward to a future condition without certainty of its completion.

I’m not an expert on US situation comedy TV shows. Probably people in China are more knowledgeable. But how many have you seen where there is romantic tension? The show will play for several seasons living with that tension. Then the writers can’t take it anymore. They write in a scene of sexual completion. Now, the show is changed forever. They have to find a new tension. It’s a different show.

Advent teaches us to live in the last century before Jesus’ birth when large groups of people were saturated with the anticipation of God’s stirring. That something new was going to happen. What would that new time look like? No one knew for sure. OK, I bet many people thought they knew. Mostly, they were wrong.

Now we are living in anticipation. What will happen? How will it change me? Change the community? Change the world?

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