I remember the first time I ever volunteered at a Senior’s Home – it was at my parents behest and was part of a larger ministry of our church. I was young, having just entered my teenage years, and incredibly nervous. I distinctly remember being so nervous in fact, that as I wheeled an old lady in her wheelchair down a slight ramp, I was shaking so much that I almost let go. Jesus take the wheel. Thankfully, the crisis was averted.
Since then however I have had the privilege of volunteering at a number of senior’s homes in some capacity or another around the GTA – though admittedly not enough, and it has gone from being a nerve-wracking task that I can’t wait to complete, to a time that fills me with joy as I attempt to share that joy with those who are so often alone.
This past week we had the opportunity to visit a local senior’s home in Parkdale and sing Christmas Carols to the residents. I simply can’t put into words how wonderful a time it was. Over the past few years, I’ve begun to spend more time reflecting and participating in the season of Advent. This has, to the slight consternation of those around me, been an adjustment as I have been resolute to delay listening to Christmas carols that celebrate the Messiah (Christ) having come into our world. Those carols have been put off until Christmas, and replaced with songs of yearning and waiting. But such waiting is not a passive waiting, it’s an expectant, preparatory waiting. It’s a waiting in which we live out of our expectant hope and share the love of Jesus with those around us. And there’s no substitute for it. I would not trade this joy, this impetus to love as I am loved, for anything.