December 4, 2017

Advent 2017

"Living in Our Change"

The rumbling surf of Port Reyes, California, fills the room each night over the baby monitor. It's a recording that plays on the iPad in Finley's nursery since Dr. Harvey Kemp's book, The Happiest Baby on the Block, is forever ingrained into my new mom brain. He insists white noise helps every baby sleep through the night faster. When you're sleep deprived and caring for a tiny human, you'll do anything to survive the constant shift and change until you find what truly works to bring any sense of normalcy back to your life.

Being a new parent brings all types of change. Change that you never anticipated or imagined until you're literally living through it one hour or even one feeding at a time. I'm not sure I can begin to imagine what being a new parent to Jesus would have even been like. Does Jesus like the white noise of cattle or sheep better? But in all seriousness, how did Mary and Joseph comprehend who their son was? How did Mary and Joseph adapt to change as they took on new roles as parents, but also as parents of the Messiah?

Within the birth narrative according to Matthew, we learn how Mary and Joseph are reassured that God is at work in their lives and are not to be afraid of the impending change with the birth of Jesus. "An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, 'Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.'" (Matthew 1:20-21)

God reassures each of us as the changing tides of our lives come and go, whether we recognize the "God winks" in the moment or years later. Perhaps if we spend more time living in our change, rather than living through our change, we would draw closer to God and learn to trust unconditionally.

-- Rachel Cosme

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