1st Sunday in Advent
Happy new year!
I noticed a pattern in this week’s readings. Isaiah (2:1-5) says, “Come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!.” Paul gives the Roman church (Rom 13:11-14) a wake-up call: “It is now the hour to wake from your sleep.” And after you’ve woken up? “Therefore, stay awake!” Jesus says (Mt 24:37-44) .
Taken together, these verses bring me back to the days when I was in school and my father used to wake my brother and I up in the morning. He was always pleasant – sometimes, he even sang – but when he turned on that light switch there was no getting around the Truth. Time to get out of bed and get moving.
Like the early morning sunlight, the new Church year brings with it a promise of great hope and joy. So many wonderful possibilities lay before us. For a pilgrim people journeying towards a fullness of life we can’t possibly imagine, every day offers us an opportunity to expand our horizons and get a taste of that fullness in the here and now.
But – it’s not inevitable. The possibilities will remain only possibilities unless we actively engage them. Soon, like the Black Friday sales (mercifully, in that case!) they will fade away.
So, time to get up and get moving in this new Church year. Time to try out a new spiritual practice or to revisit an old one. Time to let the Spirit lead us outside of our individual comfort zones a bit to see whose outstretched hand awaits just beyond our finger tips. Time to look again at those “have to do” and “it can wait” lists to see if we need to switch some items around.
There are many ways to greet the light of the dawn which is really the beckoning of the Holy Spirit. Whatever you want to do, however, it’s time to get moving.
Otherwise, I’ll have to get my father to sing to you.
Even worse, I’ll sing. And I can assure you – it’s not pretty.
Jim Philipps (3rd millennium pilgrim)
(To find book length versions of my writings on Scripture, go to www.twentythirdpublications. com)