A Blessing for Advent

By Joyce D. Sohl

This Advent let me anticipate the birth day of Jesus

with renewed longing in my heart for God’s coming;

with enough space in my life to allow for the special moments;

with an open heart and an open mind to hear of peace, joy and justice;

with the eagerness and wonder of a child;

with a waiting that acknowledges excitement and the unexpected.


This Advent let me prepare for the birth day of Jesus

by savoring the opportunities of sharing and caring;

by reaffirming both the comfort and the judgment that God gives;

by lighting the Advent wreath and the Christmas tree

as symbols of hope in the midst of darkness;

by cleaning, shopping and baking without being frantic and harried;

by being available for the awe, despair, doubt, surprise

and expectations of family friends and myself.


This Advent let me wait for the birth day of Jesus

with thanksgiving for God’s forgiveness and mercy;

with a song of peace in my heart and a hope for peace in the world;

with God’s grace in my life and a “yes” to God’s guidance;

by giving gifts with joy and receiving gifts with grace;

by remembering with action God’s children living on the edge of society.


This Advent, let me wait in faith for God’s Promised One.

Let me be ready and open to God’s surprises.

Let me celebrate God’s presence and the hope, joy and peace

that comes to all through this child/man, Jesus.

(First published in December 2001 Response)

Joyce Sohl

Joyce D. Sohl has been Laywoman-in-Residence since 2009 as a full-time volunteer. She retired as CEO of United Methodist Women in 2004. She is the author of 4 books, a teacher, retreat leader, writer and non-professional musician. Here at the Center her work is in the area of Spirituality & the Arts with such programs as Tuesdays in the Chapel, Vespers & All That Jazz, Poet’s Corner, and quarterly retreats and art exhibits.