This season invites us to be joyfully aware of God's presence even when life is difficult
by Sister Jane Riha
The first Sunday of Advent falls on the first day of December and initiates the new liturgical year, a beautiful season of waiting, anticipation and expectation. We enter into a time of contemplation focusing on the coming of the Lord, the incarnation of God in the world. God Incarnate constantly reveals God’s Self in our world, our personal lives, and in the community of faith.
The Scripture readings for this Sunday invite us to enter into the mystery of life with its elements of darkness and light. We are called to be hopeful and active as the opening prayer of the day indicates “resolve to run forth to meet your Christ”. The prophet Isaiah further invites us to “climb the Lord’s mountain” so that there in the house of God we will receive instruction and “we may walk in his paths.”
The Scriptures challenge us to be actively involved during these weeks leading up to Christmas. Those challenges include being people who walk in the light and live mindfully in the Lord’s presence in the midst of illness, family stress, personal distress and a general hectic atmosphere connected with Christmas preparations.
Advent invites us to prayerfully prepare our heart to be awake, alert to God’s presence. What is the deepest desire of your heart at this time? Take a few moments to write that in a journal or on your calendar -- then wait for the Lord.