Reflection: The Energy of Expectancy :: Epiphany
By John Tillman
When we wait for a long time, we can go from patient to despondent to complacent. We begin to wait in boredom, apathy and without expectation.
One can watch this happen at long traffic lights. The people in the cars at the front waiting on the light stop looking expectantly for the green light. (After all, they have been waiting the longest…) They adjust the radio. They fix a child’s seat belt. They open their phones to text or scroll Facebook. They start fixing their makeup. Then suddenly, the cars behind are honking. They have missed the green light. Not only are they not going, no one else can go either.
In our waiting, we must not let our attentiveness slip. We must not sit at the front of the intersection, under the green light of the gospel, neither moving forward ourselves nor allowing others to move forward either. We must not take our eyes off the concerns of the gospel, turning to concerns of this world. We must not set our hands to the plow and turn back.
Last Friday, we shared a link to an exquisite two-and-a-half hour performance of Handel’s Messiah. Eclectic only begins to describe the shift to the song we share today, “Toy Jackpot” by Professor Break Speed, which was featured in Target ads several years ago.
Although the song is not explicitly religious and could be interpreted through a solely commercialized lens, there is more here. Besides its themes of thankfulness, respect, sharing, love of family, and joy in togetherness, it illustrates the energetic expectancy with which we should await the gifts we long for in Christ. Paul tells us to “eagerly desire” the gifts of the Holy Spirit and that we should await Christ’s coming with expectancy and hope.
“All the energy is pent up
Time to express
Just waiting for the green light
Right foot press…” — Toy Jackpot, Professor Break Speed
It also hints at the reason for our expectant energy. Energy is stored so that it can be released. We wait and wait and wait so that we can begin to do something, to celebrate something, to enjoy something, and to share something.
Advent, the time of waiting, is past. The light is here. The starting pistol has fired. The gate is open. The race has begun. It is time to run with endurance the race set out before us.
Divine Hours Prayer: The Morning Psalm
With trumpets and the sound of the horn shout with joy before the King, the Lord… Psalm 98.6
– From The Divine Hours: Prayers for Autumn and Wintertime by Phyllis Tickle.
2 Chronicles 31 (Listen -4:20)
Revelation 17 (Listen -3:19)
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Read more about Christmas is Upside Down :: Epiphany
Epiphany means manifestation and refers to Christ being “revealed” to the entire world—not just Israel.
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