Our advent study begins today and our word for the week is Anticipation. What does that word mean to you?
As I have been ruminating on this word and Christmas I come right away to the on going anticipation and expectation of Christmas morning as a child and through the eyes of my children. But I also have great memories of waiting for Christmas Eve as a very special time which is tied directly to church. The midnight service has always been special to me and brings with it much anticipation of the sense of calm and peace that it provides through the beauty of a decorated sanctuary, beautiful music and candles! There is no better expression of the anticipation of Christmas then moving from a beautiful quiet “Silent Night” with candles to an exuberant “Joy to the World!” with organ and full voice!
Upon looking up the meaning and derivation of the word anticipation I found that it is from “ante” and “capere” which mean before and to take. The original meaning of the word was to act in preparation for another act, such as we set up more chairs in anticipation of a greater crowd at Christmas. This moves the meaning from just waiting, to acting in advance which makes anticipation in Advent so much more meaningful. We are not just waiting but we are doing something to prepare for the coming of the Christ child! How exciting is that? Now we are doing wonderful things in anticipation of the coming of Christ instead of waiting for Christmas to come! This way our acts of kindness, justice and fellowship all year long are a way to prepare for the coming of Christ but especially now during these few weeks before our celebration! So let’s take the baton and prepare for the coming of Christ, personally and as a world!
What will you be doing to anticipate the coming of the Christ child?