Advent | Day 7
Saturday, December 3
- Psalms 20, 21.1-7, 110.1-7, 116, 117
- Amos 5.18-27
- Jude 17-25
- Matthew 22.15-22
From the womb of the morning,
like dew, your youth will come to you.
It is a beautiful sentiment that slips—no louder than a whisper— from the lips of the Psalmist. A half-verse, not even a whole, sandwiched and almost forgotten amidst shouts of joy for the coming of a new king and priest over Israel.
These days it is difficult to miss the fact that Christmastime is coming—our time as Christians to shout for joy at the coming of a new king. Retailers send reminders before we have even had a chance to carve our pumpkins. I, for one, cannot wait until that one radio station plays only Christmas carols. Until I can dig out my Pottery Barn stockings and Guatemalan nativity set. Until store windows twinkle with lights that, perhaps unwittingly, recall the brilliance of the Star that shone over the birth of my Savior. It is these reminders, perhaps less than spiritual, that prepare my heart (though not my vocal chords) to belt out a resounding and heartfelt shout of “Joy to the World.”
But today, my attention falls upon this unanticipated whisper of the morning dew. It wets my shoes as I cross the front lawn. It lays stubborn sheets of ice on my windshield come Winter. Yet despite my petty annoyances, I cannot help but admire the dew. It lies there quietly before the dawn, before I rouse my sleepy consciousness, as water from the womb of the morning. Without lights, tinsel or virtual carolers, it reminds me of the silent birth of life. I think about the womb of Mary, where in silence, like the dew, the Life of God fills her with the youth of the bright morning star. Of this birth, one German mystic writes, God bears his Only-Begotten Son in you …. Whether you are sleeping or waking, he does his part.
This Advent season I hope that you, like me, will have numerous occasions to shout for joy at the coming of our king. But today, I invite you to take these few moments to remember that before you even woke to meet the new day, a blanket of dew lay on the womb of your heart. For in the silent stillness of the night, the Life of the Son is born in you.
Manuel A. Cruz
Adjunct Professor, School of Religion
You can access an online version of the 2011 Advent Guide (presented annually be Belmont’s School of Religion) at: http://issuu.com/office.communications/docs/2011_advent_guide#download