Saint Mark Daily Advent Devotional – December 19, 2014
by Anita Turlington
Scripture: Psalm 130
What – at Christmas? Who could possibly be “in the depths” at Christmas? So much to do, so many beautiful decorations, so much color and energy, so much to celebrate…and yet. We all experience moments of sadness during this season of joy when the Christmas spirit deserts us.
Advent is a time of waiting for the wonderful birth, but it is also a time of evaluating, taking stock of where we have been this year, losses we have suffered, ways we have failed. Many of us battle depression during the holidays because we just will not have the “holiday experience” featured in every television commercial, Christmas movie, or song on the radio.
Struggling with our emotions, we might imagine the Psalmist, awake in the middle of the night, haunted by failure, perhaps suffering from the kinds of losses we experience. Crying out to God, the psalmist offers up confidence in God’s love: “there is forgiveness in you.” Waiting for the sun to emerge from the night’s darkness, the psalmist cries out “For with the Lord there is steadfast love.” We cling to that steadfast love, to God’s mercy and understanding in our own depths and darkness.
Prayer: God of mercy, I offer thanks for your unchanging love, which gives me comfort and strength when the darkness threatens to overcome me, even during this time of joy and celebration. Amen.