by Lee Hull Moses
The 12+ inches of snow we got last weekend have thrown everybody for a loop around here. It’s Wednesday morning, and we’re still a long way from being back to normal. Cars are moving on Market Street past the church, but the side streets are icy, and who knows when the kids will be going back to school. (I do love my children, but we are all pretty tired of each other right about now.)
There’s something about a good snowfall that captures our imagination. The world looks so different all covered in white, and everything slows down. Those of us who are able to stay home don our comfy pants and bake cookies and venture out only to play, realizing that the emails can wait and that meeting will probably get canceled anyway.
We remark at the stillness of it, the blanket of snow that hushes everything. We delight in the quiet. We even have a song for it.
And yet, running deep underneath that stillness was a current of not-so-stillness, because of course the world does not shut down: the first responders who tended to car accidents and medical emergencies. Hospital staff who kept working through the storm. Nursing home personnel who packed a bag when they went to work Saturday and stayed for the duration. Volunteers and staff at shelters that stayed open and made extra room to get people safely out of the cold.
The world is not still.
That seems to be the paradox of Advent, too. This season of “already and not yet,” when we know that God is with us and we know that the world is not as it should be. This season when we watch for the light to shine in the darkness, knowing that the darkness will not overcome it.
Somewhere between the stillness and the not-so-stillness: that’s where the light shines.