Welcoming the Wise One

I am sitting in my living room thinking about what to say about advent this Sunday. The house is quiet while Rick has gone out to rehearsal. The sky has just grown dark; the computer screen is the only light in the room. That is when, in the trees across the road, I hear a conversation of two Great Horned Owls: Who cooks for you, who? Who cooks for me, well…. Chester (my dog) perks his ears and becomes stiff with attention.

Who cooks for…Who cooks for me, oh? Who cooks…? Who cooks for you, who? The conversation continues, one set of questions pitched slightly lower than the partner’s. Belatedly Winnie, our second dog, bobs her head up with alertness. Neither dog has the slightest idea what an owl looks like, or exactly what it is they hear. Instinct tells them it is alive and interesting, and they would run outside and investigate if I opened the front door.

But I stay inside. Owls are shy and will quickly take off if they think I am tracking them down. I would not be able to see them in the dark anyway. This rainy night approaching the advent season has already settled into deep blackness.

I understand my dogs’ alert ignorance, because I am like them. I don’t have a clue what Jesus looks like anymore than they can imagine the owls outside. But I keep waiting, listening. Years of worship have convinced me that it will not be boring when he comes again. I used to think that I didn’t want Jesus to come again until I had my first kiss, or until I got married, or until I had my babies…..Maybe it’s maturing age, but now I think quite the opposite: I’m convinced the world will come alive in a way it hasn’t before, and I am anticipating it more and more. I’m almost eager most days.

In talking about coming, Jesus talked about signs in the sun, moon and stars (Luke 21). Comets maybe? Meteor showers? Dramatic like the 2012 movie trailers I’ve seen? I guess he is making the point that, however it comes, we won’t miss it this time. But he also tells those who are following him to hold their heads up; there’s no need to cower and run for cover.

How about if, at Jesus’ coming, all the owls in their trees took to calling to one another, to the world? The so-called wise birds welcoming the Wise One. Works for me…a glorious feathered gathering. Chester, Winnie and I will keep listening this evening.


  1. The owl’s will be calling… He comes for you.

  2. Haha! Oh, that’s a good one :). Which book is it in the Narnia Chronicles (the Silver Chair?) where the owls all gather together to get the children where they need to be and there is great conversation going on among them? I’ll have to look it up over Thanksgiving. And eventually Aslan shows up too.

  3. Yes, the parliament of owls is in The Silver Chair. Eustace and Jill are the children. Elaine, I haven’t seen or heard an owl in years (you lucky duck!) I like the image of creation becoming more alive than ever at Christ’s coming.

  4. Yes, C.S. Lewis weaves that theme in several of his Narnia books. Than you, brother Clyde. And, yes I complain about the race track noise and the train crossing…but there are owls out here!