Advent Reflections Week Four: Love

If I’m honest, I’m not entirely sure how to write this last Advent reflection in the wake of the news of Tier 4 and tightened restrictions.

We are weary, aren’t we?

And we might not feel like rejoicing.

But I have a feeling that’s the reason we must rejoice – not to escape what is happening – but to lament – to rail at God for the injustice, poverty and isolation that the pandemic has highlighted and worsened.

The words of Mary’s song, the Magnificat; are a cry of justice, worship, power, promise and love.

“My soul magnifies the Lord,
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for God has looked with favor on the lowliness of the Almighty’s servant.
Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
for the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is God’s name.
God’s mercy is for those who fear God from generation to generation.
God has shown strength with God’s arm;
God has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts.
God has brought down the powerful from their thrones, and lifted up the lowly;
God has filled the hungry with good things, and sent the rich away empty.
God has helped servant Israel, in remembrance of God’s mercy, according to the promise God made to our ancestors, to Abraham and to his descendants forever.”

Mary speaks of the power, love and justice of God.

Love that remembers the poor, the weak and the lonely.

Love that reached from the heights of heaven to the womb of a young woman and all the way to the cross at Golgotha.

As author Scott Erikson writes:

“The risk of incarnation is the risk of love.”

Love is the reason our weary world can rejoice – even during this strange Christmas.

And it’s a love which meets us in our deepest despair, our anger, our fear.

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