Still Waiting – An Advent Reflection by Christina Whitehouse-Suggs

This is the last in the series What Are We Waiting for This Advent Season.

This post comes from Christina Whitehouse-Suggs.  She describes herself as a chameleon who struggles with finding a color of my own. I’m a performer who often loses my voice only to find it in silence. I’m a Baptimergent minister who is more comfortable among sinners than saints. I’m still searching for my tribe.  She blogs at Thoughts From the Journey

Ron Garvaise - Madonna with Child

I do not like to wait.

Call me impatient (I am). Call me a product of the consumer generation (I am). Call me what you will…I do not like to wait.

Which is why the season of Advent is so good for me.

I didn’t grow up celebrating Advent. I’d never even heard of it until after graduating college…yes, think mid-20’s. What a revelation! Spending almost an entire month preparing myself for the coming of Christ…instead of rushing into the season, thoughtless and mindless of the implications of the season for me as someone who professes to follow Christ (but rarely stops to think about what that really means).

And so, here I am, 10 years later, celebrating Advent yet again.

While many texts and sermons focus on the idea of “we are a people who are waiting in the darkness…waiting for the light of Christ,” I have a different perspective. I believe this season of waiting is ripe with possibilities and full of hope and promise.

Five years ago, I was 7 months pregnant with Kara, my first (and only, thus far) pregnancy. There was fear and hope and mystery and a great sense of the unknown wrapped up in the experience. I couldn’t peer into my womb to see her develop – I could only greet each new day with a sense of wonder and expectation. There were flutters of life (though with Kara, she kept her feet planted into my ribs most of the time…so it was more than “flutters” that I felt). The only indicators we had of her life were my swollen belly (and ankles and face and rear end and…) and the occasional hiccup I could feel as she grew and inched her way towards her due date.

Yes, it was more tangible than our waiting for the coming of the Christ-child. Yes, it was a one-time event for me…not something I experience every year (thank God!).

But there is something to be learned in the waiting time. There is something inside all of us that is longing to be born – hope or joy or peace or love – every year! But it isn’t something that can be rushed. We must nurture it, give it time and energy…and sometimes we must simply…wait.

Adventus Domini. Come, Lord Jesus. Come. We are your people and we are waiting.

Yoga & Jesus: This is a spiritual practice

I continue to be challenged and stretched by the ways that people connect to God and to Jesus Christ.  The posts below are by Christina Whitehouse-Sugg.  I found them particularly intriguing because of my growing interest in Christian meditation and as you know I am also passionate about Henri Nouwen.  I feel that we have too easily dismissed the practices of other traditions because we think of them as non-Christian and yet God created them all and it is not surprising that we can use them to connect to the God revealed through Jesus Christ

Christina describes herself as a chameleon who struggles with finding a color of my own, a performer who often loses my voice only to find it in silence, a minister who is more comfortable among sinners than saints.  She blogs at Thoughts for the Journey

…yoga has become a significant spiritual discipline for me. My easily distracted ENFP brain (Oooo! Shiny!) is quiet & focused as I attempt to master poses that have been around for centuries. But more and more, what draws me to my yoga practice is the short lesson at the beginning of each class that focuses our practice that day…I am hungry for the spiritual truths that God reveals to me through my teacher.  Read the entire article

I wonder – can you see how these five elements are helping my spiritual devotion as a follower of Christ?? I recently read the following reflection by Henri Nouwen on flexibility and it resonated strongly with my current understanding and practice of yoga.  Read the entire article