02 December 2012
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It feels as though only yesterday we were being bombarded by the different political ads and propaganda! Vote for me! Vote for me! I promise this, I promise that, no new taxes! Since Thanksgiving, we went from political ads to store ads and great bargains! Black Friday came early followed by Small Business Saturday, Sunday, Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday and this and that thing. Now, we hear on the radio and on TV about the "fiscal cliff," a new Boogie Man-esque ordeal that threatens to bring chaos into our midst. No matter what, the more we stand and listen to this or that thing, and then throw in the dark readings we have been having in our Masses, there is plenty of room to become scared and really worried about what is really happening in our world today. The apocalyptic readings, attached with some crazy preacher's words of woe can easily send anyone into a fear that may seem inescapable. At the base of all this, however, there is something that we are invited to consider during this time of Advent. In all the chaos and noise of this season and this time, we are invited to enter a period of reflection and preparation. It's not just about the Christmas gifts and decorations, or about the things we will get or do for the holidays, instead, it is about coming to a place of quiet where we are able to sit with Christ and reacquaint ourselves with the one light that transcends all things, His infinite Love! It is this love that is represented in the lights and glimmer of the ornaments, the hopefulness of the green tree and the merriment of our carols and songs are gentle reminders that it is His Love that calls us to new life, and in celebrating the birth of Christ, we celebrate not only the birth of our Savior, but indeed, the fact that in Jesus, Love Takes on Flesh. He comes to each and every one of us and invites us to be part of his love, and in that same love, we are brought to new life. In the simple and vulnerable love of Jesus, we are invited to enter into relationship with God, no longer hidden behind the curtain in the Temple, but now dwelling in our midst. He, the Bread of Life, is born and is handed to each of us to accept or deny. He is placed in a manger, a feeding trough, and it's up to us to either accept His life-giving love, or to get lost in the hustle and bustle, and the chaos of life. In Christ, we are invited to enter a place of reflection and holiness where we strive to become Saints, not just a place where we get by in obeying obligations and fulfilling duties. Just as a baby enters the life of his family in a most vulernable state, so too does Jesus come into our midst, not as the mighty warrior that had long been expected, but as the baby that we can either choose or not. Today, as we enter Advent, we are brought to remember that the end will come, but it is up to us whether or not we will hear His voice when He calls, or will we be lost in the chatter of the world. Its our choice, but in Advent, let us take time to prepare ourselves to celebrate the Birth of Love, not just because we have to, but because we know this love and we love Him. As always, may God bless you and know that you are loved. Fr. Ricky