As we celebrate our Advent with one another contemplating, “ILLUMINATE HIS LIGHT”, our journey towards Christmas is more meaningful by revealing our deepest longings and greatest hopes, and teaches us to focus all our desires on Jesus Christ.
The readings that we hear in Advent present to us three companions for our journey. They each speak to us about matters of our heart - about our longing, fulfillment and hope. The names of the companions are Isaiah, John the Baptist, and Mary. Isaiah the great prophet foretold the coming of the promised Messiah and His Kingdom. Isaiah’s words are remembered especially during Advent because of his confident hope that God would restore the faithful remnant of Israel. Isaiah also gives us hope that God will restore our lives with Him. Mary was transformed by God’s grace from the first moment of her existence, which we celebrate on the Feast of the Immaculate Concepotin (December 8th). Then, when invited to share in God’s plan, Mary accepted her role as Jesus’ mother. Her willingness to allow God to work in her life is a model for us in a culture that often refuses to acknowledge God and fears to make any commitment.
And, this weekend brings us to John the Baptist. John announces to the people that Jesus, the Messiah, has finally come and now was the time for them to change their lives. (Last week John called us to repentance in the sacred scriptures, remember?) While some thought John might be the Messiah, he knew clearly he was only the messenger and Jesus was the promised one. When we carefully look at our own lives, John helps us learn what we must change to more faithfully follow Jesus.
This week, we meet John who is in prison. He who was so faithful to point the way to Jesus, asks, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” John, who seemed to know who he was pointing to now asks this question. Jesus responds, “Go and tell John what you hear and see.”
We may be confident in our following Jesus but like John there could be worldly consequences that may interrupt our faith and raise questions or doubts. If you fall into these moments of questioning, which I believe, we may all do from time to time, let’s take Jesus at His word and prayerfully reflect on what He said, “Go and tell John what you hear and see.”
What do you hear and see? Have you seen Jesus working in the lives of those who are described as “blind, lame, lepers, deaf, dead, or poor?” May we also go beyond the literal to contemplate these words.
I have in many ways. So, I take Jesus at His command and go and tell others what I see and hear. Hopefully, you have witnessed myself with you in my sharing of this Good News.
So on this third weekend of Advent, may we by our faithfulness and discipleship, “ILLUMINATE HIS LIGHT” by how we are living and proclaiming Himself among the people we are blessed to be among.
Enjoy the moments of grace He brings before you this very week.