a widening light (& an invitation to join in).

The advent season began this past Sunday: did you know? A small advent wreath with purple, pink and white candles sits in the corner of our dining room, waiting and begging and asking to be lit. I suppose it’ll become all the more real once we get a Christmas tree and finally pull the boxes of decorations out of the basement – then, I’ll remember to light the candle by the time Sunday comes around.

Photo cred: Anglican Mom.

The good news is that there are people in my life who invite me to partake of this waiting, this hoping, this longing, even if it doesn’t look particularly full of advent cheer in our house yet.

As you’ve probably guessed, I love entering into the season by reading various advent books. [Light Upon Light and parts of A Homemade Year are two of my favorites; Preparing for ChristmasUnwrapping the Greatest Gift and Silence and Other Surprising Invitations of Advent are on my list to check out].

Well, we have an invitation for you: the She Loves Red Couch Book Club is entering into the advent season by reading poet and editor Luci Shaw’s A Widening LightConsider grabbing a copy of the book, entering into advent through this poetry, and linking up with a few sentences of reflection as well. 

Here, for instance, is a poem that stuck out to me…

Too much to ask:

it seemed too much to ask
of one small virgin
that she should stake shame
against the will of God.
all she had to hold to
were those soft, inward
and the remembered sting
of a brief junction – spirit
with flesh.
who would think it
more than a dream wish?
an implausible, laughable

and it seems much
too much to ask me
to be part of the different thing –
God’s shocking, unorthodox,
unheard of Thing
to further heaven’s hopes
and summon God’s glory.

-Luci Shaw

And here is my three-sentence thought in response…

“Sometimes life feels heavy, like I’m carrying more on my plate than my fingers will ever have the strength to possess. But then I read Luci’s words, and I know that I too am invited to the table, to be a part of “God’s shocking, unorthodox/ unheard of Thing,” and my insides calm. For I am his and he is mine, and as messy and crazy and unprepared as this journey is, I say yes.”

So, what are you waiting for? Grab a copy of the book, enter into advent, and join in the conversation over at She Loves sometime this month. We can’t wait to have you join us!

xo, c.

What books on advent help you still your heart and get into the REAL holiday groove? Otherwise, what traditions in the advent season help you prepare for Christmas Day? 

*post contains Amazon Affiliate links, y’all. Thanks for helping me get those other advent books on my list!

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