The Kingdom of God is at Hand
I was the on call chaplain for 24 hours beginning Christmas Eve at 8:00 a.m. and finishing 24 hours later. It was a busy day, lots of folks happy to see a chaplain for a variety of reasons. In my praying with folks, I used the Luke nativity story as part of framing prayer.
As part of my call I had the opportunity to be with a mom as she gave birth to her third son. I stood on one side, her mother-in-law on the other and the nurse and doctor front and center. Christmas morning from 4:00 a.m. until 6:30 we encouraged and breathed and prayed… The husband of this new mom, for the third time, was a solder over in the Middle East, just a week or two from being stationed in Iraq. Our connection that early Christmas morning to the Holy Family was tangible.
At Christmas time or during the holiday season, I am more apt to look for that star light connection between my life and Jesus. But today, in the midst of ordinary time, my eyes aren’t as ready to feel the connections between now and then. And yet this is actually the time when the Christ light shows up in the common interactions. The smiles given to us from the stranger walking by, the driver who allows us to change lanes when the cars are lined up bumper to bumper, the meal prepared for us by loved one (containing the just right comfort foods to get us beyond the blimps of the day.)
Jesus says to us, “The kingdom of God is at hand.”
Let us live ordinary time in a way that makes us citizens of that kingdom.