Advent devotion: God’s yes
On the Tuesday before Thanksgiving at the Madison Marketplace food pantry, there was quite a crowd.
Among the group were Madison families, an “oh-so-sweet” 12-day-old baby boy, a cadre of St. Paul volunteers and Madison staff, a small group of helpful Madison kids, a visitor in the Quad Cities for Thanksgiving who said she had never done anything like this in her life, young people from St. Paul to help pack and carry the heavy boxes, Kathie Heaps exchanging haircuts for read-to-me stories. In the parking lot, River Bend Foodbank provided an additional Thanksgiving box of food for hungry families.
On the Sunday before Thanksgiving, Reign of Christ Sunday, the chorale anthem was about the paradox of Jesus, both Lamb and Shepherd, both prince and slave. At the end of the piece is a hearty round of Alleluias. Our director, Jon Hurty, said, ”Let the alleluias be full and strong, let them rip.” Or maybe…that’s what I think I heard him say. In any case, there was a full, strong sound, and for me, in that ring of silence as the last notes of the organ died away, I heard, “God is here. God is with us.The generous out-pouring of God’s love in this birth of Jesus is with us. God’s ‘Yes.’”
For each of us, in our own way, let us treasure and ponder that “Yes.” Let this season of Advent be an echo. Yes to hope. Yes to generous hearts. And in our troubled world, yes to peace.
Sue Grove is a retired teacher and dedicated volunteer. She and Rex live in Bettendorf.