advent prayer

Meg Marshall

By Rianna Isaak-krauss

we sit in darkness
longing for light
death all around us
yearning for life

remember the advent call to wait
to wait with pregnant hope
as we watch Mother God conceive
and give birth with Mary
give the gift of birth to Mary

Jesus. Light. Life
Bread. Wine.
Death. Death. Death.
New life… and waiting.

walking this world now
in half-light? Half-life?
embodying more death and life daily

Advent time of remembering to wait
so we Re – member ourselves
come together, gather
for we must join or beings,
our skills, our hopes, our voice
one body to midwife
to our Mother God once more

PUSH. we urge. we serve.
we touch and hold
in solidarity
and actively wait.
yearning with our Mother God
to give birth again
to Christ’s return.

imagine the desire, the joy,
the exuberance to come
a time of no more tears
nor death

together the rocks cry out
the trees clap their hands
we remember to prepare
the way for the LORD

coming again in the clouds
of soft embrace
as the church opens her arms
in anticipation

She spreads the table
so all may feast and eat
no one will be hungry

She opens her doors
so all may share warmth
and welcome
no more deportations

She opens her heart in grace
to love each being
touch each lonely one
see each person and say
“you are enough”

Mother God
we wait with you now
for this birth
for Jesus
re-membering, longing
preparing, yearning
feasting, welcoming
loving, praying

Come, Lord Jesus, Come.

The metaphor of the midwife was shared with me in a women’s group this week. At first, I was confused: How can we- as humans, be this midwife? And God be the Mother? Doesn’t that give us all of the power? But no, as we sink into the imagery, it is clear that the midwife’s only role is to serve in solidarity with the Mother, praising, encouraging, supporting, loving the Mother. So too, our role as the church, as beings, is to praise and worship the Mother, support and love Her.

Once again God shifts our understanding of who has power, it is not the one who is speaking and guiding with commands. Here the power flows from the body of the One who births.

During this advent season, we both remember Jesus’ birth in the manger, his life, his crucifixion, and new life, whilst also waiting for Jesus’ return.

Here we are called into the advent waiting, an active waiting to prepare for Jesus coming again by living into God’s new way of being in this world—through sharing feast, sharing welcome, and sharing love.

We are called into this advent waiting for Jesus’ return by lamenting the death around us, naming it as injustice, and choosing to live in an alternative way. Between the choice of life and death—choose life.

May it be so.


Rianna Isaak-Krauss is a Canadian Mennonite Brethren woman studying Christian Formation in Elkhart, Indiana at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS).

2 thoughts on “advent prayer

  1. Glenn Devoogd

    What a wonderful touching poem. I love the imagery of a midwife supporting and encouraging and eventually helping to give birth.

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