The word Advent, from the Latin adventus, is very closely related to the word, adventure, and what a good descriptor of Advent it is. Advent is in a real way, adventurous. We are going from one place spiritually to another. If we are not moving spiritually, then we are spiritually dead, for dead things do not move or grow. Advent is thus a time of adventure and lively discovery of the Lord.
Nevertheless, as much as advent is about our adventure towards the Lord, much more is it about the Lord’s adventure. After all, we are remembering the Lord’s coming to Earth. God is coming to town, making a list, and then visiting your house to give you incredible gifts. None of it is magic, though, but even more amazing, it is grace. He may not be coming down your chimney, but He is coming to your soul, and it better be ready. He has ventured far from his majesty in heaven to reside in the little manger that is you. Indeed, we are all little mangers, with our own animals and filth, but we also have some of those majestic kings from the East and our humble quietude: and indeed, that is where God wants to be born. He loves coming into our filth, and He longs to make it beautiful.
This Advent, like every Advent, has two sides. There is the fact of the Lord’s coming, as He is always coming, knocking on the doors of our hearts, beckoning us to listen and know His love. He is having an adventure that takes Him into our little manger selves, full of animals and other interesting things. On the other side, there is also the fact of us, the majestic travelers from the East or the humble shepherds from the fields, adventuring to discover Jesus in our lives. The encounter, for which we long, requires both. The Lord pursues us, and we also must pursue Him.