Readings: Isaiah 2: 1-5, Romans 13: 11-14, Mathew 24: 37-44
The church begins another liturgical year, with the first Sunday of Advent year A. The liturgical year begins with readings that point out the need for us to be prepared and ready, so that the coming of Christ will not come upon us like a thief. There is no better time for us to have these readings than on the 1st day of the new liturgical year. This is understandable because the word advent, emanates from two Latin words; Ad and Ventus. Which means ‘to arrive’. Also we have the word Ad and Venire, which means ‘to come’. This goes to show us what the season of advent entails. It is a season of preparation and waiting for the coming of the Lord. Thus, the liturgy of today prepares us for the four weeks period of preparation for the coming of Christ at Christmas. A good preparation during this season of advent, will be a good foundation with which to begin the new liturgical year.
The prophet Isaiah in today’s 1st reading, foretells what is to come in the future. The emphasis is on the conversion of all the nations and it will usher in the reign of peace that comes from God. Thus, we are all invited to be partakers of this kingdom of God that will bring the reign of peace. This is possible if we all resolve to begin to live like the children of God. Our life and daily actions should be guided by the love of God and the love of neighbor; if we truly want to enjoy this reign of peace that the prophet is talking about in today’s 1st reading. This is a necessity in our life, family and in the world at large.
In the 2nd reading of today, St. Paul talks about the second coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The emphasis is that we should drop all the deeds of darkness because the day is close at hand. What he is simply saying to us during this season of preparation is that we should drop those things we do that we are not proud of. Things we do under the cover of darkness, things we do not want other people to know that we do. It is call for us to drop our bad habits like excessive drinking, smoking, jealousy, envy, backbiting and all such destructive traits. As individuals, we all know aspects of our life that needs to be revisited, let us make effort during this season of waiting and preparation to ensure that we correct this challenges facing us in our life. No matter what the challenge is dear friends in Christ, it is not beyond the grace of God. Cooperate with the grace of God by doing your best and allow God to bring forth the desired transformation that will make you part of the reign of the kingdom the prophet Isaiah talks about in today’s 1st reading.
The gospel reading will be more fruitful to us as children of God, if we have done what we ought to do in relation to the 1st and 2nd reading of today’s liturgy. The gospel reading emphasize the need for us to be prepared at all times, so that Christ’s coming will not come upon us like a thief. When we live our life with love, justice and sincerity, we will always be ready and prepared for the coming of Christ at any time. This is because we are living our life like true children of God that we are and we are not afraid of the coming of Christ at any point in time.
In view of this my brothers and sisters in Christ, let us resolve to do our best to be true ambassadors of Christ by living a life that God is proud of and also we are proud of. The question on this 1st Sunday of advent is, are we ready to make honest and sincere efforts to change the narrative of our life? This is possible with the help of God and our honest effort.
It is my prayer on this 1st Sunday of advent that God will strengthen us and bring about transformation in our life. Peace be with you! Amen!