Last night I was listening to a sports program while trying to entertain our new puppy who had more energy at that moment than I did. For some reason the broadcasters began talking about Wayne Gretzky, arguably the greatest hockey player of all time. ”He was the not the most talented or the fastest player on the ice,” they said, “but he was able to make the game around him slow down while it continued at breakneck speed for everyone else.” I have heard that same description used about other athletes who excel in their particular sport. A great hitter in baseball being able to slow down the speed of the ball in order to hit it. An outstanding quarterback in football being able to slow down the rush of other players around him in order to complete a pass.
I wonder if that is what is needed for those of us who pay attention to Advent as we move through the days that lead to Christmas? Can we find ways, even if for a moment, to slow life down even as it continues on around us at full speed and so pay attention to the moment we have and to those who share life with us in that moment? Slow it down and so remember who we are and where we are going?
That is the key, I think…
Not to getting to Christmas
Because Christmas comes regardless of what we do or don’t do (thank God!),
But of arriving at Christmas with a sense of openness and expectation and hope and peace.