The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber... the night is nearly over; the day is almost here. (vv. 11-12)
I am the lucky mother of a Morning Person. A Morning Person who is not content to sit in his toddler bed, quietly reading books or playing with stuffed friends while the rest of the family get the sleep we so badly need. No, he is a Morning Person who wants to spend his mornings with the people he loves. Lucky us.
So I am very often awakened from my slumber to experience nights that are nearly over, and days that are almost here. (I think it is safe to assume that Paul was not a parent... if he had been, I'm confident he would not have written so pleasantly about being awake in the pre-dawn!) I can't say that I have ever greeted those days with much enthusiasm, or looked forward to the coming sunlight with great anticipation!
But Advent reminds us that a Light is coming; a New Day is on the verge of breaking, and it's a long-awaited one, a bright glow of all that is good. And not only are we invited to be roused awake when it rises, but we ourselves can be a part of all that shines. We can leave behind all the dramas of the dark, all those choices and failings and evils we'd most like to hide, and we can instead choose a wardrobe of the Son. We can help to bring the Light--to kindle every flame of hope, peace, love, and joy... to celebrate every sunrise. Our expectation, our anticipation, our preparation for that Day help to open our hearts and our world to welcome him.
Let us awaken now. The hour has come.