1. I love celebrating winter solstice (today!); a couple of solstice-related songs:
"Canticle of the Turning" and
"Yule," from Lisa Thiel's Circle of the Seasons CD.
2. For a pair or contemporary interpretations of the outrageous reality of God's incarnation in Jesus of Nazareth, I was excited to get Touching Wonder by John Blase for free on Amazon; I've been reviewing some for OMG! (Oh.My.Goodness.) publicity, and I sprung for a copy of The Journey: Walking the Road to Bethlehem by Adam Hamilton, that I'll be sure to read during the next few days, even if my blog and review happen a bit later.
3. As much as I love festivals of the Spirit like the Day of Pentecost and Reformation, there's an indescribable something about the Advent experience with its newness and rebirth that's different from resurrection from literal death that Easter brings. In fact, when I first started getting involved in the church's daily life, and began consciously walking with Jesus, Advent was the first season I truly appreciated, probably because of how its texts and symbols acknowledged my own darkness. Again this year I'm waiting for the fulfillment of my own hopes and dreams—as well as the world's.
4. I love to remember that in Spanish, hope, wait, and expect are one and the same, with "espero" the verb, "esperanza" the noun, "espera" the gerund (etc., since I indicated only a sampling).
5. Speaking of hoping, waiting, and expecting—anticipating doing some fine art, recently I bought a handful (5) of blank canvases and for Christmas, bought myself 2 packages of water color markers for a total of 56. I always buy the inexpensive kind that admittedly don't last very long, because the variety helps with shadows, highlights, and details, and more expensive markers like Copic are just that: expensive! Though long ago I left behind the illusion that anyone ever truly is well, I'm aware I need to be healthy if I'm going to contribute again to society and church on any meaningful level.
Thanks, Jan! Wonderful remainder of Advent, Seasons of Christmas and Epiphany to everyone!