for Sunday, December 9, 2012
This Sunday is always John the Baptist proclaiming the Messiah. It is
wonderful and we can sense the joy of the Baptist. God is sending a
Redeemer. We know that it does not turn out to be the kind of Redeemer for
which many were hoping. This Redeemer is not a man of power and might in
the way of the world.
Listen to the Prophet Baruch once again: God is leading Israel in joy by
the light of his glory, with his mercy and justice for company. The
Redeemer will bring joy, mercy and justice. Jesus teaches us how to live
in joy with mercy and justice by his humility and poverty. This is not the
kind of redemption for which people hope.
The Letter to the Philippians takes us the same theme: the one who began
a good work in you will continue to complete it until the day of Christ
Jesus. The good work begun in us is faith, not power and might. Faith in
a God who loves us. Faith in a God who sends us His Son to free us from
The Gospel of Luke today gives us the words of the Baptist: Prepare the
way of the Lord, make straight his paths. John the Baptist proclaims a
baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. It is the poor and the
outcast who follow him. Occasionally a person of wealth and power gets
interested in him. Some people seem to think that he is a fanatic.
This Advent presents us with the normal challenge of our faith: Who do we
say that Jesus is? Who is Jesus in my life here and now? Do I want a
Redeemer? What kind of a Redeemer?
Our God loves us and promises everlasting life in the world to come. In
this life He only promises us suffering and trials - with a deep inner joy
and peace if we live in faith. Advent reminds us to purify ourselves from
all that is not of God. John the Baptist points the way for us in Advent:
purify, repent, forgiveness. Yet we know that this message is to prepare
us for the coming of One who loves us beyond all we can imagine and who
wants us to share His life forever.
My sisters and brothers, let us walk the way of the Lord in this Advent and
know the presence of the Savior in our lives. Come, Lord Jesus.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Baruch 5.1-9
Second Reading: Philippians 1.3-6, 8-11
Gospel: Luke 3.1-6
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: