Advent and Christmas Wisdom with St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
The passion of Jesus lasted throughout His whole life
“Consider that when Abraham was leading his son Isaac to death, that he did not give him notice of it beforehand, even during the short time that was necessary for them to arrive at the mount. But the eternal Father chose that His incarnate Son, whom He had destined to be the victim for the atonement of our sins, should know the sorrow He was to endure from the very first moment that He was in His mother’s womb. The whole life, then, of our blessed Redeemer and all the years that He spent, was a life of pain and tears. His divine heart never passed one moment free from suffering. The martyrs have suffered but assisted by grace, they suffered with you and fervour. Jesus Christ suffered but He suffered with a heart full of weariness and sorrow and He accepted all, for our love.
O sweet, O amiable, O loving heart of Jesus, I thank You. O afflicted and loving heart of my Lord, I thank You for all that You suffered for me!”
Rescue me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked,
from the grasp of the unjust and cruel man.
O ROOT OF JESSE,
that stands for an ensign of the people,
before whom the kings keep silence
and unto whom the Gentiles shall make supplication,
come, to deliver us and tarry not.
Speechless I stand before You, contemplating the Father’s mysterious design for our salvation. I revere the elaborate preparations the Father puts in place for Your coming into our midst as one of us. First, He prepares a mother for You, preserving her from sin right from conception and filling her with grace. Then, in the fullness of time, He approaches her announcing His plan and the role she has to play in it. Then, He takes care of her heart-broken husband, Joseph, announcing to him the mystery of Your incarnation. And finally, the Father raises one more prophet to prepare the field for Your mission and to introduce You to our world.
Today, Your Word invites me to reflect on the role of the Baptist in Your redemptive work and challenges me to make space for You to be born in our world and in my heart.
Lord, let my life be a pointer to You as John’s was…I beg You!