A few weeks ago, I started the process of considering a second dog. I knew I would be going through a rescue organisation, and that it takes time to find the right fit.
Of course, as fate would have it, a great dog came along - 10 days before Christmas. My first Christmas in this parish! Winter (ergo miserable weather for housebreaking and training)! Houseguests and parties (ergo irregular calendar)!
This was definitely NOT the right time.
And yet: it never is. There's always a reason to NOT do something that will change your life. And, if we try hard enough, we rationalise to ourselves so much so that change may never happen.
However: there are times when, despite less than ideal conditions, it is also exactly the right time. In my case, welcoming a new dog happened at exactly the right time. In the midst of parcels and parties and prayers and praises, a precious pupped popped into my life. She's gorgeous, she loves her toys, she snores like a foghorn. While it would be easy to get spun up in the busyness of the season, I'm making extra time to come home and walk and play. I'm laughing more, my other dog is more energetic, and we're all having a lot of fun.
Love has broken in: at a time I thought it not right, she is a terrific addition to the household. It's not perfect, but it never will be. And the timing was not right, but it could not have been better.
Life is like that. Faith is like that. Advent is like that: the timing is equally right and not right; the emotions are both perfect and imperfect; the spiritual journey is both ideal and inconvenient. The Spirit knows when to move in our lives, bringing love and the opportunity to serve: even if it's against our plans. If we're fortunate, we're blessed to recognise how this movement is exactly at the right time.
Because love will break in whenever and wherever God wills it. And love will capture us, whenever and wherever we will accept it.
It's never the wrong time to let love break in to our lives.