Sunday 18 December 2011

A Pause In Advent #4

Pause in Advent Logo from FlossEarlier this year, for the first time in my life, I had an ear infection and was deaf for a few weeks. It made me think a lot about how we hear, mis-hear or misinterpret words.I decided to make my Advent Pause Posts about ‘Homophones’ those words which sound the same, but have totally different meanings.

Low: [adjective] Lacking liveliness or good spirits; discouraged or dejected.

Lo!: [interjection] used to call attention or to express wonder or surprise


low - it isn’t uncommon for people to feel low at this time of the year. Some people hate the whole of the Christmas period because they know they are going to feel bad most of the time – whilst others recognise that there will be some moments when they do not sparkle as much as usual.

There are lots of genuine reasons for feeling low right now.

  • not being able to spend the season with loved ones
  • feeling stressed because they are spending the season with people who are not loved ones
  • feeling lonely – whether or not they are actually alone
  • missing those who have died
  • remembering happier times which cannot return
  • being out-of-sorts, in body, mind or spirit.
  • struggling with self esteem and food issues [what can I wear? what can I eat? why is everyone else smarter, slimmer, cooler, happier than I am?]
  • feeling frustrated due to lack of finance, and the inability to give the splendid gifts they really wanted to buy
  • feeling burdened because of the pressure of responsibilities [buying and cooking the lunch, sorting the presents, getting the house straight for guests, managing the children and the elderly, keeping the peace between warring relatives…]
  • feeling tired because there is always something left on the to-do list
  • feeling guilty for things said or unsaid, done or not done during the past year.
  • feeling anxious about what the New Year will bring

I know I will have the odd moment on Christmas Day when I will physically ache with the pain of missing my parents, or when I wish I could have given my family fabulous, costly presents – and I think most of us will have ‘moments’ like that. MY concern is for those who spend the majority of the season trapped in a bubble of low spirits and loneliness whilst they are surrounded by happy sparkling friends and family – which only emphasises their own distress.

So let’s be aware of those people, and show them love and understanding. Peace and Goodwill to all people!

burne jones gabriello! this comes from Old English, and really just means look!

There are three particular verses in the King James Version of the bible which use this word – reminding us of Jesus’ coming, Jesus’ ministry, and Jesus’ presence.

lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

lo, a voice from heaven, saying, ‘This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’

lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.

The word is quite often used in the phrase ‘lo and behold!’- meaning‘look and see!’ How often can we look at something, but not really see it?

As we look again at the manger, let us see beyond the swaddling clothes and the straw, to the wonderful truth it portrays.

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, BEHOLD, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a SAVIOUR, which is Christ the Lord.

[This is the fourth, and final Pause In Advent. Next Sunday will be Christmas Day itself. Thanks again to Floss for facilitating this blog-event, and to all the other bloggers who have contributed such thought-provoking and helpful posts over the past few weeks]


  1. I just wanted to say thankyou for your 'Pause in Advent' posts. I have enjoyed them very much. x

  2. Hi Angela!
    You've caused me to ponder making stars for my granddaughters. They can hold them tonight when we have our Advent time together.

  3. I used to love Christmas but every year its becomes less and less enjoyable. Prolonged family illness, arguments, sadly missed grandparents, doglessness (my sweet Harry Lab miss you baby)etc. Still there are always people who have it darned hard. I was visiting the health shop recently and a lady was hugging the assistant, when she left the assistant told me that her 20 year son was diagnosed with leukemia after feeling poorly for a year. Doctors at first brushed aside that there was anything wrong. Puts things into perspective


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