John in his prison had heard what Christ was doing and he sent his disciples to ask him, “Are you the one who is to come, or have we got to wait for someone else?”
This year, with Christmas Day being a Sunday, Advent is the longest it can possibly be. How do we make the most of this time? I suppose we can spend more time at the shops – they are air conditioned after all. The difficulty for us during the Advent season is maintaining our focus on the whole point of the season. These weeks of December are usually full of so many things for most of us. There are parties and catch-ups, buying presents and preparations, or simply caught-up in the pace of life. How do we get off the tread-mill and contemplate the promise and hope of Advent?
It is not easy feeling in control of our lives at the best of times — we always seem to be chasing the clock or held prisoner by our diary — but the weeks before Christmas have their own special form of chaos. That is why it is all the more important to slow down and take some time to let the spirit of Advent soak deep into our being. Christmas will be here before we know it. What might you and I do to spend some time in reflection, or peaceful silence (as if that is easily found), or refreshing contemplation? No body else will make this time for us; we need to claim it for ourselves. This week ahead, let us make a commitment to spend 5 minutes in quiet prayer and stillness, and ask God to let the hope and possibility of Advent touch the depths of our hearts.
Another way to prepare is to participate in our 2nd Rite of Reconciliation on Tuesday, 20th December at 7pm. This will help us clear away the baggage of this year and prepare for the joy that is Christmas. However we choose to make this Advent a spiritual time, I invite you to take time to reflect on this beautiful Advent prayer in the week ahead: “God of glory and compassion, at your touch the wilderness blossoms, broken lives are made whole, and fearful hearts grow strong in faith. Open our eyes to your presence and awaken our hearts to sing your praise. To all who long for your Son’s return, grant perseverance and patience, that we may announce in word and deed, the good news of the kingdom.” Amen.
|Jan 13, 2017||3 Sunday of Advent (Year A) 11.12.2016||Listen||Download|