Sometimes if I tarry in the driveway when I get home I can hear his expectant and impatient bark from the house. Once the door is open I am always greeted with wagging tail, excited spins at my feet, and almost always that growly growl he does as if he is trying to tell me something. Simeon greets us each time with pure unadulterated joy.
    I try to imagine him sitting in the house while we are gone, oh I am sure he does his share of napping, but I also have no doubt he waits tirelessly for the sound of one of our vehicles in the drive. I have seen him do it some even when we are home a loud car goes by, or the neighbor comes home, or someone out for a walk, and his ears perk up and he waits at the door until he can see.
   We have ventured into the season of Advent here at the church. It is a time of expectancy, a time of hope, and time when we wait patiently and sometimes impatiently for Christmas to come. I remember as a child the high expectation of the season with the bright lights, the Christmas cookies, the tree, the presents and the waiting was almost unbearable.
   I still have a bit of that within me, I know where it comes from, I have inherited it from my mother. I used to get so annoyed with her when I was a teenager the evening of Thanksgiving she would say, “Kent, would you go get the Christmas Tree out so we can start decorating?” It used to absolutely drive me crazy! But now, I am my mother’s son, I can hardly wait for the season, seeing decorations and Christmas Trees out before Halloween cause me little angst and if I am honest maybe even a little excitement!
   So as I approach this Christmas, the first Christmas here with you our church family, I am filled with expectation; the expectation and excitement that change and newness bring, and the expectation and grace that tradition and the joy of the season brings.
I pray as we move through these weeks of Advent the Peace, Hope, Love, and Joy of the Season fills your lives, your homes, your hearts, and your souls with the very Presence of Love, the very Presence of the Spirit until we gather on that Christmas Eve night to ring in the coming once again of unconditional love and grace into our midst.
   Simeon will continue to wait until that time, I will continue to wait until that time, and I am blessed to wait with you in the midst of this community of grace beyond belief.


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