Artist Melanie Weidner says of this painting that it is "Based on a quote from the Tao Te Ching: "Do you have the patience to wait until your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving until the right action arises by itself?" (By the way, if you havent been to her site yet, check out Melanie's other beautiful work here.)
Anyway, there is something so delightfully soothing at this unusually busy time of year, the time of year in which you are probably making lists of your lists, to think about sitting quietly until the water clears itself. Maybe it's because patience seems like the very last attribute we preachers need right now, rounding the corner into the third Sunday of Advent. We need fortitude, creativity and energy! We need pep! You might actually be feeling a little impatient for the season to get on over with, so things can get back to something like normal.
John is impatient. So impatient, he cant wait to see for himself, so he sends Jesus a message from prison "are you HIM or NOT?" As if in reply, the epistle counsels "be patient, strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near!"
What about you, patient or impatient pastor that you are? Are you preaching on Isaiah's poetic imagery? The Magnifcat? Or is this pageant or choir cantata Sunday for you and yours? Check in the comments.