Advent Reflection – 5 December – Thursday of the First week of Advent, Year A – Readings: Isaiah 26:1-6, Psalm 118:1, 8-9, 19-21, 25-27, Matthew 7:21, 24-27
Let us adore the Lord, the King who is to come.
A nation of firm purpose You keep in peace, in peace for its trust in You. Trust in the Lord forever! For the Lord is an eternal Rock. … Isaiah 26: 3-4
REFLECTION – “The psalmist says: “The Lord is great and worthy of praise” (96:4). Who is this ‘Lord’ if not Jesus Christ, great and worthy of praise? You surely know He appeared as man, you know, too, that He was conceived in the womb of a woman, that He was born of that womb, nourished, cradled in her arms, circumcised, that an offering was made for Him (Lk 2:24) and that He grew up.
You also know that He was struck, covered with spittle, crowned with thorns, crucified, and that He died, pierced by a lance. You know well that He suffered all those things. Yes, “he is great and worthy of praise”. Guard yourselves from despising His littleness – understand His greatness. He became small because you were small – understand how great He is and you will become great along with Him. This is how houses are built, how the solid walls of a building are raised. The stones brought to construct the building increase, you, too, increase, understanding how great Christ is and how He who appeared to be small is great, very great indeed…
What can poor, human language say in praise of Him who is so great? In saying “very” great it is trying to express what it feels and believes… but, it is as if it were saying: “Try to grasp in thought what I am unable to express in words and yet, you must know, that whatever you may have grasped is only a fragment.” For how can any language translate something that surpasses all thought? “Great is the Lord and worthy of all praise!” May He be praised, then, may He be preached, may His glory be proclaimed and His dwelling place erected.” … St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church
We cannot eliminate upsets and anxiety from our lives but Advent is a good time to slow down and remember where we should look for stability and peace.
The readings today present God offering us a gate, a passageway into God’s will. For Isaiah, the gateway to God, consists in being just and keeping the faith. Jesus says, it is the person who hears God’s word and puts those words into practice.
Throughout these weeks of preparation for the celebration of Jesus’ birth, the Scriptures for our liturgies tell us again and again, to turn to God, to build our house on the rock of Jesus. Only there we will find peace.
Call someone who is lost. A friend, who hears not the word of God. Perhaps your words of faith might be a light in their darkness.
We thank You, Lord, for all that we have received. Move us to give of our plenty to those who have little. Lord, open the gate of my heart. Let Your words be a light that will lead me to follow Your will and thus lead others to You. Amen.