Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Cross in Green Bay, WI
Reflection for Dec. 5, 2021

Reflection for Dec. 5, 2021

Kindness, joy and compassion

We can help prepare the way  of the Lord  in our daily encounters

by Sister Jane Riha

The key phrase for this Second Sunday of Advent is “Prepare the way of the Lord.” People are preparing for Christmas with its time crunch and tensions. We Christians, followers of the Lord Jesus, are called each Advent to prepare a pathway in our hearts for God to enter and transform us. That is why, each Advent we have a Gospel that features John the Baptist, the great forerunner of Jesus, the proclaimer of his coming among us. The people were anxiously awaiting a Messiah; the reading from Baruch for this Sunday speaks of that anticipation.

Both the Book of Baruch and the Gospel of Luke speak of a type of “construction project” with “mountains made low and gorges filled in” and “winding roads made straight and rough ways made smooth.” In our times, this is meant as a metaphor for the preparation of our hearts. Where are the valleys and the rough ways that need smoothing or filling in? Gentle reflection will reveal that to each of us and invite us to make some changes or pray for conversion of heart. God is waiting to enter freely into our lives.

Along with the anticipation, within the readings for today are threads of joy. In Baruch, “for God is leading Israel in joy by the light of his glory with his mercy and justice for company.” In the Letter to the Philippians, “ I pray always with joy in my every prayer for you, because of your partnership for the gospel from the first day until now.”

We can live in joyful anticipation by also bringing joy to those we meet each day.  The pandemic continues to create anxiety in the lives of so many. God calls each of us to prepare the way of the Lord, to touch the hearts of others. Our presence in kindness, joy and compassion reveals God’s love in the world.


12/03/2021 8:23 am

Thank you for your message. having joy also bring more patience and peace.

God bless.

Agnes Fischer
12/03/2021 8:57 am

Thanks, Jane. We need the reminder., Aggie

Diann Wimmer
12/03/2021 1:54 pm

Many thanks, Jane, for your reflection.

I find the metaphor of construction very helpful and interesting. You pointed this out so well with the reference, "this is meant as a metaphor for the preparation of our hearts. Where are the valleys and the rough ways that need smoothing or filling in?"

I'm working on the "rough ways".

Blessings as we prepare for Christmas.

Irene Whatley
12/04/2021 7:56 pm

I enjoyed reading your thoughts. We need reminders of our valleys and rough spots. Patience is such a rough spot that I can never be reminded to often. Thank you!

Rev. William J. Jacobs, Jr.
12/05/2021 2:53 am

Thanks so much for your comments & reflections.

I loved your repeated use of the word "joyful"! Something that is so needed in our interactions today - that we always be joyful toward one another! What a beautiful set of seasons (back-to-back) for us to be "joyful!"

God's blessings to you & all the Dear Sisters!

Father Bill

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