Whenever my dad pours slow-moving ketchup out of a bottle, he sings that Carly Simon song that used to play in Heinz commercials. Do you remember that song?
“Anticipation, anticipation / Is making me late / Is keeping me waiting.”
Anticipation is making her late? Late to what? The meeting that she is waiting for? What the heck?
I’ve been thinking about anticipation a lot, because as you may have heard, it is Advent and Advent is the season of anticipation. During this season, we await the birth of Jesus and the hope that He brings.
Oh my, did that just sound as corny as I think it did? It sounds corny to me. I’m sure some folks just read that and rolled their eyes, thinking, “She is going all holy-roller on us.”
The truth is, I’m not going holy-roller yet because I can never quite figure out just what it is I do believe. I’m constantly struggling between my confidence in a loving God, my incredulity over a story in which a woman becomes magically pregnant and a guy gets zapped into heaven, and the peace that I know I’ve experienced when I pray to Jesus. My experiences and my brain are in constant struggle. Sometimes, it’s my experiences leading me towards belief while my brain leads away from it, but more often than not, it’s the latter. The majority of adults I spend time with during the regular school day don’t believe in much of anything, and those who do believe in the Holy Trinity seem to attach that belief to a thousand other claims over which I wholeheartedly disagree. I don’t agree with my Christian coworkers on very many political or social issues, that’s for sure. Some of them don’t consider me a Christian, not because of my doubt, but because of the fact that I voted for a Green party candidate in the last gubernatorial election. (I didn’t know how I could follow what I understand of Jesus’ advice and vote for either of the leading candidates.) And when people who are supposed to follow the same God I want to follow condemn me, it gets harder and harder for me and my brain to want to be a Christian.
Sorry for the venting. God is bigger than venting, right? If so, He’s certainly bigger than politics.
I digress. I have something real to say about anticipation.
I have four candles at home, all ready to light for Advent, but I haven’t lit one yet. I want to. I want to sit down, light a candle, lose myself in prayer, and tell God I’m waiting for Him. I’m waiting for His peace, His hope for the world, and most especially, the best part of God, His Grace. But, I’m late to my own desire. I’m late the appointment with God, and I’m keeping Him waiting. As much as I want to keep that appointment, one I anticipate very much, I just haven’t been able to force myself to do it. Yet.
20 (Give or Take A Few) Hour Anticipation Bread
No-Knead Bread has been around most food-oriented blogs I know, so I won’t write the recipe up here, although I do need to praise it. This is some good stuff. I bake a lot of bread, and this is the easiest, and one of the most successful, everyday bread recipes I’ve ever tried. I’ve made it four times now, and had wonderful results each time. I’ve only made a few changes to the recipe. I add 1 ½ teaspoons of salt, rather than only 1 ¼, and, since it fits my schedule better, I’ve allowed it to rise even longer than the 18 hours suggested. I’ve let it go as long as 23, and experienced no adverse effect.
It's worth waiting for.