How often, though, do we imaging being without something? What a stretch of imagination to think of ourselves like, say, the Haitians after their deadly earthquake; or like someone imprisoned for decades; or someone losing health in a life-threatening way! Yet imagining our lives with less might be the more important kind of musing-because it might bring us more in touch with the poor, the seriously ill, the deprived.
I have long thought of Advent as a kind of “imagining without.” We believers, many of whom have grown up knowing the graces of Jesus, imagine ourselves during these four weeks before Christmas as if we were waiting for him, longing for him, in need of him. “O come, O come, Emmanuel,” we sing, as if Emmanuel has not already come.
Advent, then, with this kind of “imaging without,” can stretch us in two important directions. First, it can bring us in a new way to realize our absolute need for Jesus Christ in our own lives and to see more clearly the ways we take the presence of Christ for granted as we live out discipleship. What if we did not have Christ? What would be unhealed, unforgiven, unsaved in our own lives?
Read the rest here and ask yourself: What can you imagine being without this Advent?