I ran hot water in the kitchen sink and filled it up all sudsy and clean until I began to stack in the greasy plates and mugs with hot cocoa stuck in the bottom. The dirty dishes had been accumulating all week while I’ve been singing carols and lighting candles and writing about this season of anticipation.
While I’ve been waiting on the Christ child, the mess in the kitchen has been waiting on me.
But it’s not just the kitchen.

First things first. Tilly bounced around the house barking and wiggling as I pulled her leash off the hook. With the rain and the snow and all the busyness cranking up around here, I haven’t taken her on a good long walk for days. She needs the lap around the neighborhood regularly to help burn off some of that energy. When she doesn’t get her walks, she starts eating heirloom afghans again. She’s two for two, now.

When we returned home from our walk and the dishes were washed and stacked to air dry, I tackled the floors, first sweeping the hardwoods and linoleum, then vacuuming the carpet.
There’s more to be done. Laundry is piled up high; I still haven’t put away all the flower pots and windchimes outside; and there’s always stacks of clutter to tend. But those can wait.
At least a little while longer.
This season of waiting can become all too sparkly and romantic if I don’t remember that real life goes on even while the candles flicker and the twinkle lights of the Christmas tree glow.
Waiting for Jesus was never meant to be an isolated event, relegated to a cathedral. Waiting for Jesus, the real waiting, happens elbow-deep in the dish water, or on the wrong end of a dog leash half way across the subdivision.
Advent Season will end in a few weeks, when we will all be gathered with friends and family openings gifts and eating baked ham.
But the waiting on Jesus will continue. And life, right along with it.

Photo by lakewentworth, via Flickr, used with permission under the Creative Commons License.