Even after becoming a Unitarian Universalist I’ve loved the season of Advent, and particularly how it precedes winter Solstice and mingles with Hanukkah. Each of these holy days or seasons has its own message. Advent invites us to anticipation and patience. While in the Christian calendar that anticipation is geared towards the birth of Jesus, as I’ve found space for my personal faith to grow I’ve also found that sense of anticipation to develop into one of anticipating the growing darkness and Solstice, when the sun begins to return.
I’ve also appreciated that Advent and the other holidays of light at this time of year invite us to patience. They do invite us to exuberance and delight, but we need patience, hope, faith, love, and the ability to cultivate joy in our daily lives in order to make it to the great celebration, whether that celebration is for Jesus’ birth, Hanukkah, Solstice, Watch Night, or something else. During this same time, Hanukkah invites us to reaffirm the power of the spirit and the value of religious community and spiritual life, even as we explore our understanding of what a miracle is and how we relate to Mystery.
Now you may be wondering why I’m reflecting on this in my “In the Interim” article. … And so, I ask you, what messages does this season have for you and for Woodinville Unitarian Universalist Church as we go through this time of transition, as you do your interim work, as we move towards a new year where you will continue deepening in your understanding of your history, connections, leadership, mission, and vision? Where do the lessons of patience, faith, hope, anticipation, joy, love, the power of spirit, the value of religious community and spiritual life, and our exploration of Mystery and miracle take you in this interim time? Where will they take us?
And so I invite you to reflect on the messages of this season by yourself and in community this month.