Week 2 of Advent | Cynthia Curtis
Friday, December 14
Our daily reading from Luke shows us Jesus playing host at one last meal with his disciples. What does he do? Quite simply, we see him do four things: take the bread, bless it, break it, and give it. We have seen this before—these are the same actions he did earlier when he showed the disciples how to feed the hungry.
If we have been paying attention to Jesus’ ministry in Luke and the other gospels—these four movements, taking, blessing, breaking, and giving—are all over his life and work of being with us. Henri Nouwen, the Catholic priest and professor at Yale Divinity School, says these four movements are the essence of the spiritual life. They encapsulate our lives as humans and as Christians.
We are called to become bread for the world, bread that is taken, blessed, broken, and given. We are called to be taken—we are chosen by God who sees us as Beloved. We are called to be blessed—to claim our Beloved birthright and to affirm goodness in others. We are called to be broken—to face and befriend our own wounds and put them under blessing. Finally, we are called to be given—we are meant to be in community and share ourselves with others.
In this second week of Advent we await with joy the birth of our Savior. May we live into and see anew these movements of the Spirit of Love.
Adjunct Professor, School of Religion
To download a digital copy of the 2012 Advent Guide, put out by Belmont’s School of Religion, click here.