Advent is all about waiting, or more accurately, preparing for the coming of Christ. This should be a time of wonder, and reflection on what you need to do to make straight your path.
But I have been feeling overwhelmingly empty the past few days. Maybe lonely? The story of John the Baptist keeps playing over and over in my head.
“a voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him” – Mark 1:3
Instead of the more instructive “make way” section of the passage, I have been focused on the opening line, and how the meaning changes when you shift the emphasis.
“A voice of one” calling out in the desert highlights John’s voice, it is singular and alone. Make a minor change to ‘a voice of “one calling out in the desert” ‘ and you the feel the spiritual desolation of the world around John. Deafening silence.
Then today, is the Old Testament account, there is a touch of desperation. John is not yet known, so “the voice” is stripped of any humanity, leaving just a cry. And there is the desolation of the desert, as well as the fear of the wilderness to tend with.
“A voice cries out:
“In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Isiah 40:3
Perhaps this is the feeling that I mentioned here, the idea that when you find Faith, you start emptying yourself to make way the path, but you have nothing yet to fill the void.
Perhaps it is just the rush of the holidays.
Good news. At some soon, maybe even today, I will hear the “Ode to Joy”. . . figuratively and literally, a chorus of voices singing in praise, in love, and inspired.