This is a question I’ve been asking a lot recently.  In a lot of different circumstances: When will the pain end?  (Not yet, apparently.)  When will I find a job?  When will my life begin to take shape the way I know it is trying to?  And, usually, when can I take my next pain pill?  (Every 4 hours.)

When is also a question that I found myself pondering during Church last Sunday.  (Full readings can be found here.)  When?  When will all of this happen?  Of course, the great mystery of Advent is that “all of this” already has happened.  Christ was born–there was the manger, Mary and Joseph, angels, shepherds.  It is happening–Christ rose!  It will happen.  And there’s the mystery.  What will happen?  When?  How can it be better than the best story ever?  Advent.  I love it.  It’s all about history and future mystery.  And I keep asking “When?”

You came,
as King in Infant’s guise
you were,
as us in this world to live
and we were
as us too
and brought death, sorrow,
Great Finality
But You,
You are not actually us
and The End,
Was not

And so you are,
still here,
as us in this world to live
Ongoing Promise
and we,
we are trying,
Not always very well
but, maybe,
with grace,

Great things have been done,
Ends that were beginnings
And old made new
and still greater things promised,
Visions beyond our eyes
for you were and are
and will be once again
and you say we will know
but how?
what are the signs?
when is the promise you are for me?

written 12-05-08