One week down. How are you doin?
Our Second Reading sets up what we need to talk about this weekend – it says how we are to be encouraged by the Scriptures – that they may provide us hope.
First of all – who doesn’t need more hope in their life? Who isn’t being crushed by the weight of the pressures of this life – sickness, stress, anxiety, trouble at work, doubt in our faith, struggles in our families, uncertainties that eat at the pit of our stomachs – yeah, we all need more hope.
And how do we get it? We get it through encouragement in the Scriptures. But if we aren’t praying the Scriptures, that’s a lost cause!!
Because ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.
Are we praying the daily Mass readings everyday?
If we aren’t, if we aren’t opening Sacred Scripture every day, then it’s no wonder why those crushing pressures of life are beating us down. Because we aren’t combatting them with Jesus.
And the only way we can do that is by filling our lives with Jesus, not with ourselves or our problems.
Because our life is like a glass – it can only be full of so much. We can fill it with ourselves and the deafening cacophony of our anxiety…… Or we can fill it with Jesus.
But Jesus doesn’t just happen – like any relationship in our lives it takes work. It’s a constant struggle, it’s a battle, it’s an honest to God war in our lives to put Jesus first, to trust Him, to know Him, to rely upon Him, and to not allow ourselves to be consumed by ourselves.
Three weeks from today is Christmas (eve). We have the next 21 days to pray the Scriptures. 21 Days to pray our devotional. 21 days to come to daily Mass, to go to Confession, to open up our minds and hearts to Jesus – and to truly work on our relationship with Him.
But that only happens if we make the effort to get to know Him in His Holy Word – and to embrace the words of the Baptist and prepare through repentance, through the willful and deliberate turning of our lives towards Jesus.
That’s what Advent, and indeed the whole of our Christian life is all about. Because there is only one person in our lives who will truly give us the Hope we so desperately long for. And we need to get to know Him. God help us all. +