A few days ago, as I was preparing for Advent celebrations in our churches, my carefully planned schedule was interrupted with a death in my parish. One of my parishioners lost his father, a man whom I had visited a few times since beginning ministry here. I was already overwhelmed with meetings, services and hospital visitations. I knew he was a special man, a man who lived his life in laughter; a man who lost his wife of fifty-seven years three-and-a-half years ago; a man who was waiting...who, in his terminal illness knew the reality of advent, of waiting for the unexpected.
As I busily prepared for his funeral, and for all the other services, I was overwhelmed with rushing around. The morning of the funeral, I was heading out to drive to the church and I noticed some snow falling from the trees beside our house. There was a group of birds eating from the pine trees. I grabbed the camera and I waited. I was reminded what it was to wait for something beautiful. I managed to get a few good shots, but I had to take the time to wait for the birds. I was a helpful and graceful reminder of what season was encroaching upon my busy existence. It was an advent moment.
For those interested, these birds are Pine Grosbeaks; I found that out at a dinner table with a theologian who, apparently, is also an avid birder. The beautiful rose coloured one is the male, the yellow one, female. Enjoy the pictures!