Advent Devotion 17

Tuesday Dec. 13, 2022
One day as we were walking along on the Camino de Santiago in Spain, it became quite warm. The day had begun on the cold side. But the sun had come out and it was balmy.

We were on a road walking through the countryside. Cornfields on either side of the road. Every so often a house. Once in a while even a car! There were certainly more walkers than cars on this road. Several times we had passed two women, friends walking together, from Sweden. They were in their late 60’s or early 70’s. They spoke English. At one point, I was walking alone. Up ahead on the road, I saw one of the Swedish women, stopped, in the middle of the road, with her backpack on the road beside her, and she was, well, mostly disrobed. Down to the ‘unders’ as our three year old grandson calls them. This wasn’t the typical layering and taking off an outer layer or two. I slowed my pace, wanting to give her time to get dressed before I over took her. Unconcernedly, she had undressed and then dressed in different clothing. In the middle of the road albeit not heavily trafficked. By the time I met up with her, she was once again fully clothed, she had her backpack on, and she had resumed walking.

Then she began to explain that she had just changed her clothes. It had gotten hotter than she expected and she needed to make a change. As she put it, “I was wrongly dressed.” So, there and then, in the middle of the road, she took to remedying that. To taking off the warmer clothes and replacing them with an outfit more appropriate to hotter temperatures. Now, she was comfortable and ready to continue walking for the rest of the day.

I cannot forget the explanation, “I was wrongly dressed.” What if we were to see how we were somehow in the wrong. And then addressed ourselves to fixing the situation. Immediately. Then and there. I was wrongly dressed. She immediately changed her clothes. What if we took to addressing our wrongs immediately. Right then and there. A course correction. Advent used to be called the ‘little Lent’ because it was a time of repentance. The liturgical color for Advent can be purple, the color associated with repentance.

So, this Advent season, what can we stop and fix? Right now. No excuses, delusions, or distractions. What have we been wrong about? And how can we fix it?


In this Advent season as we are Seeking Christ, may we remember that Christ Jesus offered new life to people on the spot – through healing, forgiveness, and the casting out of evil. Christ invites us to course correct – any time, anywhere. Without fear or shame. Amen.

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