Cucumbers, Advent and immanence

Yesterday, I finished the last of the cucumbers from our garden.  Or most of it.  The end bit was starting to soften.  I like cucumbers.  Especially the long, skinny kind that cost a dollar or so at the supermarket.  That’s why we grow them–because they’re good and because I’m too cheap to buy them.

The cucumber waCukess the last.  We had saved it in the fridge for weeks.  The last of the tomatoes was appreciated a few weeks ago.

Now we enter a new season.  We start figuring out whether to spring for supermarket cukes, or rely on the less preferred celery sticks.  Will our kale and broccoli yield anything to eat?  How soon?  How much of that box of Fuji apples we got from some friends with an orchard will last for fresh eating?  How much should we sauce?

The autumn sports seasons have finished.  Two local football teams just lost their last games yesterday.  The scholastic soccer teams played out the season not so many days ago.  The election is over, with mixed results around here.  Students have settled into routines of behavior and misbehavior at school.  They are learning.  Last week I started to observe systematically to see how much.  Rains have set in, most days.  Nights can get cold.  We’ve even had our first snowfall on the valley floor–early this year.  Outdoor exercise is harder to find in comfort.

So what’s next?  Is this all there is?  All there will be?  Where do we find glory, or even sufficiency?  Will the days ever stop getting shorter?

This is the season I start playing my Gregorian chant album.  It’s time to read Isaiah, or a minor prophet.  Advent seems to have a function in my life.  I wish not to give it up in favor of kitschy Christmas shopping frivolities.

In my life, one of the functions of Advent seems to be course correction.  In my time of searching for the next good thing, I find it easy to get confused by the next powerful, large or trendy thing.

For a few days now, my momentary reminders and brief connections with God have been centering around His power.  I’ve been seeking the powerful God as a point of connection with all that is–and all that’s holy.

In meeting today it was opened to me that this is a mistake.  My primary understandings haven’t been about how Christ within and among us is one with the first mover of all, but how He’s right here and right now.  Not wanting, becoming or striving for something, but just being–and helping me share in that.  I don’t want to seek primarily God’s transcendence, but His immanence.

The voice of God is not in the great wind, and not in the giant produce from the biggest supermarkets.  It’s in the undersized, end-of-the-season cucumber, the microbes that soften it, and in the small acts of love that we share.

3 thoughts on “Cucumbers, Advent and immanence

  1. A childhood friend in Georgia is now Eastern Orthodox and sent me three CDs packed with Russian Orthodox choir music. I turn to these at this time of year, and with all the more pleasure, knowing of your Gregorian fix! 🙂

    “The voice of God is not in the great wind, and not in the giant produce from the biggest supermarkets. It’s in the undersized, end-of-the-season cucumber, the microbes that soften it, and in the small acts of love that we share.”

    This, I think is one of the best statements on this I have seen. I’m so glad to have followed you home here.

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