Waiting for Christmas has its own kind of pattern. Children, especially, start counting down early. At first, the weeks of December seem to stretch out forever. But soon the days start to become a blur of activity. Then all of a sudden, it’s Christmas morning!

Watching and waiting for God is much the same. The prophets foretold the coming of the Messiah, describing how he would set everything right. Generations of God’s people longed for his coming. Then suddenly, a baby was born in Bethlehem, laid in a manger—and our salvation was set in motion. Angel choirs rejoiced! Those whom God gave eyes to see and ears to hear could perceive that something amazing was happening.

In the two remaining weeks of Advent, there’s much to experience. Bethesda’s annual Christmas Concert takes place Wednesday, December 14. Our own Jessica Reed will lead a caroling group on Saturday, December 17, and everyone’s invited! Many folks will meet to rehearse for the Christmas Pageant; even more will gather to decorate the church and prepare for Christmas Eve services.

Things can become a bit of blur as we draw closer to Christmas Day. By all means, enjoy the festivities—but please, don’t become distracted! Together let’s ask the Holy Spirit for eyes to see and ears to hear what God is doing here and now, even in the joyful blur. Be-cause Christ is coming among us, and that is the greatest joy of all.

The Rev. Susan Beebe