At the time of Advent, words are spoken at the altar that sound as an echo of the past. It seems as if these words no longer fit in our hectic world. What are we to make of the expression the world-calm around us? Where can that calm still be found?
When we listen to the world around us we usually hear nothing but noise: traffic, machines, masses of people who are restlessly on their way. And when we listen more deeply than the audible noise, we hear inwardly a world of anxiety and pain, a world that is shaking on its foundations. Even when some people show outer self-confidence, under the surface you can sense profound insecurity. Is that perhaps the world that Christ meant when He said: “And human beings will lose their heads for fear and expectation of what is breaking in upon the whole earth”? (Lk.21:26)
When you listen even more intensely, more deeply than anxiety, more deeply than the ground of the soul, more deeply than the abyss, you find the ground of existence—a world of infinite calm and unshakable security. That is what in the Advent epistle is called: the working of the Father Ground of the world.
And when in a chaotic world you look higher than our restless cities that never sleep, you find at this time of the year the rays of the dimming sunlight, that change everything they touch into gold—even the most banal and unsightly things people build on earth. And above it the unshakable firmament.