Ready or Not: Advent is Here!

Today marks the beginning of the Advent season, perhaps my favorite time of the liturgical calendar.

As we begin our preparation for our celebration of the Incarnation, as we ready ourselves to welcome anew the Christ child into our hearts, a good prayer is Mary Oliver’s Making the House Ready for the Lord.  Here it is:

Dear Lord, I have swept and I have washed but
still nothing is as shining as it should be
for you.  Under the sink, for example, is an
uproar of mice – it is the season of their
many children.  What shall I do?  And under the eaves
and through the walls the squirrels
have gnawed their ragged entrances – but it is the season
when they need shelter, so what shall I do?  And
the raccoon limps into the kitchen and opens the cupboard
while the dog snores, the cat hugs the pillow;
what shall I do?  Beautiful is the new snow falling
in the yard and the fox who is staring boldly
up the path, to the door. And I still believe you will
come, Lord: you will, when I speak to the fox,
the sparrow, the lost dog, the shivering sea-goose, know
that really I am speaking to you whenever I say,
as I do all morning and afternoon: Come in, Come in.

I wish you all a blessed Advent.