’Twas the morning of 1st Advent and the church was empty
No greeters or congregants, just a few staff in the sanctuary.
But the wreath was placed by the window with care,
In hopes that God’s light soon would be there.
The children were nestled in front of their screens,
wondering if lockdown would last ‘till their teens.
Paul sang an anthem, John gave a Gospel re-cap,
And the congregation settled in for a long sermon’s nap.
When out in the sky there arose such a clatter,
We sprang from our couches to see what was the matter.
Away to our windows we ran in a dash
And there amid clouds was a mighty lightning flash.
The sun, moon and morning star gave hints of things to come
“Come, thou long-expected Jesus” a heavenly choir began to hum.
When what to our wondering eyes should appear
But the Godhead in glory – now that caused some fear!
With a plan for eternity, so vast and divine,
We knew in a moment it must be a sign.
More rapid than eagles God’s visions they came
And they ruled out the wrongs, and called them by name:
“Now Poverty, now Abuse, now Sorrow and War
Oh Injustice, Oh Hatred, Oh Racism and more
To the bottom of the heap at the sound of my call
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
And then in a twinkling we heard on the air
A chorus of angels proclaim everywhere:
“God’s plan for the future as just in the past
Is meant for this moment and also to last.
Find a way to be open, let your hearts now embrace
With love and compassion the whole human race.
Take a stand; do not fear; set your priorities straight;
Give generously, act justly, for tomorrow don’t wait.”
Then with a wink and a sigh and a nod of God’s head,
Soon gave us to know we had nothing to dread.
God sent us the Word who went straight to work
And filled all the longings and soothed every hurt
And laying holy hands on the weak and the lame
The Word healed, then revealed to all the true name.
“Call me Hope, call me Peace, call me Saviour or Friend
I’m the Bread, I’m the Wine, the Now and the End.”
And we heard the One exclaim while continuing on The Way
“Be faithful, my people, ’til I’m back another day.”

Written by Deborah Hart
Minister, Deer Park United Church
Advent 1, December 3, 2017,
With a few small revisions by Stephen Milton,
Nov 27 2020.