Advent 2019

Twinkle lights really aren’t competition for a sky full of stars. Really, they’re not.

I’m talking about floods of stars, far from city lights, picking out Orion’s belt, crook in your neck—- sky full of stars.

You can’t trust twinkle lights.

The synthetic magic they radiate with their soft glow, may make your skin look flawless and your world look tranquil, but with the sun’s rise they will be back in their corner with the rest of the mundane.

With the to-dos and the to-buys.

With the to-bakes and the to-watches and the to-wraps.

The frenzied and the frantic….

And so, to the curator of the memories,

And those stuck in the kitchen.

To those keeping it simple, and those going all out.

To the speech givers and the children who fein to listen.

To the ungrateful, and the perfect gift finders.

To those chanting “keep Christ in Christmas,”

and the candlelit belters about silence.

To those trying to find the mythical “balance” in a world that was deliberately set at a tilt, spinning on an axis in orbit.

To you I say— it’s really not a competition.

For, how can there be competition over something that is already finished and won?

He, who is represented by that too pale baby in your manger scene, isn’t worried about Santa. Or presents. Or the indulgent, long wishlists. Or consumerism vs. minimalism, Or elves that watch your every move deciding who’s “good.”

It’s not a competition. He has no need to compete.

You see, He is aware that when all of the twinkle lights burn out in a tangle, and the Amazon boxes are heaped in a pile. When all the wishes are granted and the luster wears off. When the bustle loses its hustle and the magic is trying too hard. When the chaos of the relentless grasping at joy inevitably falls through our bumbling fingers—

Peace will be prayed for.

The same peace that came as a sword in a manger. And then thirty-three years later would declare, “it is finished.”

This peace cannot be faked, or bought, or even given away with generous intentions. The intense lacking, becomes unbearably obvious against the backdrop of the overkill.

Mark my words, peace will be prayed for.

When everything becomes both too much, and not enough, all at once.

The wonder starved, and supernatural deficient will seek out authentic fulfillment amidst a barrage of the counterfeit and manipulated.

They need only to look up.

You see, it’s no competition. It’s not even close.

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