Monday, December 10, 2007



It's hard to wait. This morning I had an appointment to get my teeth cleaned. Now I really dislike being trapped in the dentist's chair! But it was good practice for me in my aspiration to learn to wait with patience and acceptance. Here is part of an Advent meditation on waiting by an Episcopal priest with a ministry of spiritual direction:

We have waited in silence on your loving-kindness, O God. —Psalms 48:8

Most of the time, we don’t wait. And we certainly don’t wait in silence. Most of the time, we hurry and we push. We split time into tenths of seconds. We fret when a traffic light turns red and holds us up for a bit. The press of hurrying creates harried and hassled souls, disconnected from life and from kindness itself.

By contrast, in Spanish, the verb esperar means both “to hope” and “to wait.” I have a native plant called esperanza in my gardens. It grows and blooms in the driest conditions, offering copious blossoms in gold or orange. When the blooms come, I am reminded of waiting in silence on loving-kindness. I am reminded of something that my usual pace all but obliterates: there is a way of being and knowing that is grounded in timing I did not create. There is a way of being and knowing that dimly remembers that waiting in hope is an attitude of faith.

-- Mary C. Earle

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