Advent – a time of waiting – more than a calendar with sweets, more than an extra candle lit each Sunday, perhaps a time to move from darkness into light, from penitence to praise?
A hymn inspired by Isaiah 2:2
2:2 In days to come the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the highest of the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; all the nations shall stream to it.
1 This is the time of waiting,
the calm before the storm,
the time of Advent judgement,
the coming of the dawn;
a time of recollection,
of Christ's audacious hope,
outside our human scope.
2 The nations will be gathered,
the age will be fulfilled,
the judgement be enacted,
as Christ had hoped and willed.
But for this consummation
such birth-pangs will be felt,
like rupturing of wine-skins,
the earth will heave and melt.
3 For love to be exalted,
for hatred to be banned,
our human goals must shatter,
division must be spanned.
A change of mind is needed
as we are turned around,
to move from desecration,
to find love's solid ground.
Andrew E Pratt (born 1948)
Words © 2018 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England email@example.com . Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd
Metre: 7 6 7 6 D
The world is burning, twinkling lights betray
a damaged conscience, we have lost our way.
Our neighbours drown, we build on solid ground,
as Jesus weeps while songs of praise resound.
Within this season darkness clouds each mind,
consumption numbs the pain we ought to find
when hearing news of hunger and of drought,
a stable’s birth should soon erase all doubt:
the Christ we claim to know, born in the dirt,
while at our doors our neighbours starve and hurt.
So put aside this carolling and praise
until compassion drives our words and ways.
Andrew Pratt 19/11/2021
Words © 2021 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.stainer.co.uk.
Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider
and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.