Advent is hard.
For me, Advent serves as a humbling reminder that no matter what I anticipate or hope for this season, God is always going to stretch my imagination and debunk any comfortable fantasy about what I want this Christmas to be like.
I am not in control of Advent anymore than I am in control of another's understanding or interpretation of what Christmas is and should be. In this sense, Advent sobers me from the inebriated delusions I entertain about perfect family reunions and extraordinary Church events or ministries during this time of the rolling year. Nevermind my sense of failure when I realize days have passed by and so has the daily office. Bad monk, indeed.
Advent is a time of beauty if we see the grace of God's forgiveness and reconfiguration of our lives into the pattern of sainthood. It is a remarkable time if we seek nature all the while dispelling our human nature who frets during this season.
In my case, this is the result of feeling ashamed of the toil I undergo because real peace eludes me as I waste days entertaining the fictional Christmas and the real season slip through my hands like sand.
I pray you let Advent be and you, me, all of us, take the greatest risk of all. Wait, wonder, and willingly take Christ as He is and not as we image Him to be according to our whims and demands.
This is the new covenant.