So, I am behind two days in my Advent reflections, and we are just a week in. Alas.
You will forgive me, but I was a bit distracted. There has been some upheaval in my work setting, and a couple of deaths. This is not unusual in my line of work but I had to do a funeral for a newborn that lived. 73 days in NICU but could never breathe on her own. The best I could do that day was snap the photo of the ornament on our tree.
Then I sat down to read the scripture tonight, to try and catch up, but instead, it caught me up! Our reading for today is Jeremiah’s call story, and the fourth verse reads “Now the word of the Lord came to me saying,“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,”
That last bit, brought me back to that little peanuts bedside on the night she died, I used these same words in her funeral service. As we Go through life, we like to imagine it as a lovely trip in a little red pickup returning home with just the right tree to celebrate Christmas loaded up in the bed.
But life often takes us on detours we go places we did not intend to go, we go places we don’t want to go, and places no one should have to go. But we find ourselves in these places, it can be lonely, scary and awful.
But we are not the only ones who go to these places, God goes with us. As we prepare to celebrate Christmas even in the midst of our struggles and grief, God comes among us, Emmanuel, and all that we live into the good and the bad, the pain, the anguish as well as the joy are all known to God with us.
Next time you go, whether that destination is pleasant or painful know that there is One that goes with you, who will be with you and has gone to hell and back for you. No matter where you go when you go, or how you go, there in Christ we have the promise of one who is there already waiting to comfort, waiting to wipe away our tears, waiting to make us whole.