Daily Reflection
From a Creighton Student's Perspective

December 12th, 2007

Kelly Orbik

2nd year graduate student (Masters in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution)
BA ’06 Spanish and Justice and Society

Zec 2:14-17 or Rv 11:19a; 12:1-6a, 10ab
Judith 13:18bcde, 19
Lk 1:26-38 or Lk 1:39-47

"Silence, all mankind, in the presence of the LORD! For he stirs forth from his holy dwelling." Zechariah 2:17

I can imagine no more joyful emotion, than to feel a baby leap for joy in the womb. When John leaps with joy in Elizabeth’s womb, we feel the joy and anticipation. While I am not a mother, each week I experience some of the rollercoaster of emotions as an interpreter for a prenatal clinic. As a ministry of presence, I accompany the women, holding their hands as they wait for news about their babies. New life, new joy, but nine months can seem like forever when all you hope for is to hold your baby in your arms. During Advent, we are all midwives, holding each other's hands as we anxiously wait, preparing to celebrate Christ’s birth and as we labor in our world, preparing for the coming of heaven on earth. It is scary. It is painful and no one can really tell us how it will go, but we are overcome by the joy, the hope and the waiting.

As we wait, preparing our world and reflecting on our lives this Advent, let us take the time to be silent. One question that comes to mind is from Wendell Berry, “Will this satisfy a woman satisfied to bear a child? Will this disturb the sleep of a woman near to giving birth?” These questions give me pause, I have a lot of preparation to do.

Celebrating the feast of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, Our Lady of Guadalupe, I am filled with memories of all the women who have shown me living examples of compassion, of love and of hope. My host mom in the Dominican Republic on mother’s day would sing a prayer whose chorus is “madre de los pobres, los humildes y sencillos, de los tristes y los niños que confían siempre en dios.” (Mother of the poor ones, the humble and the simple, of the sad and the children who always trust in God). Our Lady of Guadalupe transcended barriers of race, class and language to reach out to our world through Juan Diego. She is a symbol of joy, hope and love especially important during Advent. Last year on this feast day, I was brought to tears by the news of families torn apart during the ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) raids across the United States. We are waiting to be whole again, our global community. We are waiting for the love and compassion of the Advent and Christmas seasons to bring us together. We celebrate small victories; small steps but await the singing and rejoicing that we are all yearning for.

Excerpt from “Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front”
By Wendell Berry from “The Country of Marriage”

So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor…
Love someone who does not deserve it…

Invest in the millenium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit….

Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts….

Ask yourself: Will this satisfy
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep
of a woman near to giving birth?

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