As we count down the remaining days of fall, we’ll miss the beauty of this season, the crunch of the leaves under foot, and the smell of pumpkins scorched by Halloween candles.
With the end of this season comes the north wind with its ice, and cold. The snowflakes as they began to cover the earth remind us that the season of Christmas is almost within reach. But wait... Christmas never comes without the season of Advent. The season of waiting... and waiting... and waiting.
Close to 20 years ago a good friend gave me a large, almost sick looking Christmas cactus. She said it was going to be thrown away as it was much too large for the space available. I hated to see that happen, so I took it home and gave it some TLC.
After many years it seemed like all the love and care I gave, wasn’t enough for it. I could never get it to bloom for Christmas or any other time, for that matter. After many years of trying and trying to force it to bloom, I picked it up and moved it into a room that was rarely used. A room that was as cold and dark as the season. I shut the door!
To my surprise, after waiting all those years and finally giving it the cold shoulder, it bloomed! When I opened the door I found beautiful red flowers blooming all over its hanging branches. It was such a lovely sight and to this day it still produces a beautiful display of red blooms every Christmas. I had found the secret. “The secret is in the waiting, it needed to go through a period of darkness and cold in order for me to see the true beauty of the flowers."
In Advent it is also the waiting, we need to wait to see the true beauty of the Christ child that God has sent to us on Christmas morning.
May your time of cold, darkness, and waiting, bring you to a Christmas of light, warmth and love.