I'm pretty certain I have admitted my horrible TV watching habits. Junk. A lot of junk. One of my more recent obsessions, though, has been giving me new thoughts about Advent and Christmas. (See even junk TV can be good, right? I'll try for any justification.) Anyway, MTV's 16 and Pregnant has me thinking a lot about Mary. In the show teen mothers are followed from mid-pregnancy through the first few months of their babies' lives. Needless to say, in most episodes there isn't a whole lot of rejoicing going on.
But rejoicing is what Mary did. (I know I'm off lectionary from most of the rest of you with my Mary thoughts, but it is still Gaudete or Rejoice Sunday). Even in the midst of her scandelous situation, Mary was moved to rejoice and sing.
Back to the lectionary: James urges us to be patient. When longings are deep, patience is hard to come by. And in my experience when longings are deep, times of rejoicing are not coming easily either. Which, I believe, is why someone had the wisdom to put this Gaudete Sunday in the lectionary - - to remind us to rejoice. Not because, as the fake roadside sign implies, we don't ever rejoice any other times, but because even in our season of preparation and anticipation there is room and reason to rejoice.
Now, about those sermons. Who's ready to rejoice? Maybe we can help each other get there. Have a story to share? A prayer to offer? Of course one of those ever necessary children's sermons would be great! Let us all know what you need and how you're doing. Join the party in the comments!!!