Emily Dickinson's poem is about hope. I had this poem in its entirety published in the prison library. I had it made into a mobile that gently swayed with the breeze. Hope is often like that. A gentle breeze that offers a kiss of coolness to a dry and parched soul. Sunday heralds advent. Something long waited. Something greatly anticipated. Advent gives us a glimmer of hope.
I love the advent song O Come, O Come Emmanuel. It was composed in a minor key and has the haunting familiarity of loss and of pain and that of the eventual arrival of hope! The words of the hymn state that God comes for everyone – the joyous and the grieving, those who celebrate and those who mourn.
The song addresses our need of a Savior. It addresses our various stages of life. In that haunting minor key, it tells us that Emmanuel — God-with-Us — comes to comfort the grieving, the mourning, the sad, and the lonely.
This promise, this hope awaits us and all those who mourn — and we rejoice. “Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.”
This advent season may you prepare your hearts for the inclusion of Emmanuel. May you rejoice in anticipation of the coming season.
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the suffering and afflicted. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted, to announce liberty to captives, and to open the eyes of the blind. 2 He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of God’s favor to them has come, and the day of his wrath to their enemies. 3 To all who mourn in Israel he will give: beauty for ashes; joy instead of mourning; praise instead of heaviness. For God has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory.