Are you ready?
This year, Advent’s clarion call, “Prepare!” is more poignant than usual in the Bunkehouse. In addition to the customary preparations for the holidays (setting up an Advent wreath, tending to wacky calendars, cleaning, writing the family Advent letter, shopping, prepping decorations..), a couple family members’ health changes have taken us deeper.
Several weeks ago, Kay’s brother, Jim, collapsed at work – knocked to the floor with excruciating pain. Jim’s wife stayed with us while he was a patient at St. Luke’s, where tests on his broken vertebrae eventually revealed a stage four metastatic cancer. Within the same time frame, Kay’s mom, Lois, injured her back, necessitating an ER run, follow-up tests, and treatment. Kay spent a week in Napoleon, tending to her mother, as pain medications and total rest began to encourage a modicum of healing. Just last week, radiology revealed compression fractures of several vertebrae.
The family Thanksgiving celebration, planned for Jim and Val’s home, was moved to the Bunkehouse – and calls went out to our kids in Los Angeles, Brooklyn and Orlando to think seriously about getting home sometime over the holidays. As you read between the lines, we’re trying to prepare – for what the holidays “ultimately” point toward and celebrate, often overlooked in the feasts, chaotic fun, and wrapping paper. This holiday season promises to be quite precious, as we prepare to greet the Lord, especially as God has gifted us with God’s presence through Jim and Lois.
Advent is all about preparing to greet Jesus – in flesh as a vulnerable human being, in our hearts as Lord of the life we each have been given in this world, and as the King who will return to judge all creation. Get ready. Even better, always remain readied. You never know…