Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Advent 2

OK, now I'm behind. Not on my interior Advent, but on writing about it. I got so engrossed in the plaster-and-paint issues yesterday ~ which only goes to make the point. Advent occurs in the midst of all the muck.

Some brief notes from yesterday, illustrated via the Iona nunnery, gone since the Reformation:

I was glad when they said to me,
"Let us go to the house of the LORD!"
~ Psalm 122:1

Much that was is lost. For none now live who remember it.
~ Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Rings

A lot of my friends are mystified by the church thing in my life. Maybe I will write about that at some length after Advent. For now (since I am a day behind!) I will just say that it's a mystery to me, too. I do not have my friend Lynda's string of pins for thirteen years of perfect Sunday school attendance. I do not look like Mrs. Osteen in a pink suit and pearls. I schlep around in my jeans and clogs, nails always breaking off ~ and I have a life hugely full of the light of faith.

The church, whether you are thinking in terms of buildings or community, concrete or ineffablility, long ago past or paint-splattered present, is a repository for that light.

Barbara Brown Taylor has a wonderful sermon in which she speaks about a visit she made to the ruins of a church in present day Turkey (I think), and about her understanding of what can happen to a building and its community. A community and its building.

I can't entirely explain it. But tending that light is a good thing. And remarkably, even when the buildings turn to ruins and the community vanishes, the light remains.


aamy said...

Quite new to blogger,I found your blog really interesting.

Paul said...

All that faith is just fine, but if you want the plastering done, I'd buy a trowel.

Kathryn said...

I love that picture.

I'd be interested in what you have to say about the church thing in your life. I find it quite impossible to explain for myself and my friends are also mystified.

Cynthia said...

Beautifully expressed -- especially about stuff that's so hard to express.