1st Sunday of Advent, Year C
Jeremiah 33:14-16 1 Thessalonians 3:12, 4:2 Luke 21:25-28, 34-36
Theme: God is our hope
Today is the 1st Sunday of advent year C, the beginning of a new liturgical year of the church. At the beginning of this new liturgical year, we are presented a message of hope. An opportunity for us to be up and doing in our Christian practices. To live like children of God and to turn away from everything that will stand as a barrier between us and the love of God. The prophet Jeremiah in the 1st reading presents to us a message of hope. Taking into consideration the difficulties the Israelites have gone through and the promises of God for a better future. He gives them a message of hope, that the future has better things in store for them, because God is going to fulfil His promise in their lives and things will be better than they are at the moment. Just like the promise of God was fulfilled in the lives of the Israelites; so will it be fulfilled in our lives too, during this season of advent. In the gospel, Jesus admonishes us to live lives that will prepare us for his second coming; which can happen at any time and at an hour we do not know.
My brothers and sisters in Christ, even as we are admonished to prepare ourselves for that moment of encounter with the Lord, it is the message of hope that should encourage us to live like children of God. The message of hope will be more meaningful to us if we take seriously the admonition of St. Paul to the church in Thessalonica in today’s second reading. In this reading, St. Paul encourages us to embrace holiness of life and a life of love. The season of advent, is already an opportunity for us to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas. The four weeks of advent is a period of preparation, for us to meet Him worthily whenever he comes. If we can put into practice the admonition of St. Paul in today’s 2nd reading; we will be truly ready to meet Him when He comes. We are encouraged to live lives of love and be people whose actions are guided by the love of God and of neighbours. Let us strive to be less self-centred and be more concerned about the common good and the good of others.
In the gospel reading of today, Jesus encourages us to be prepared and ready at all times, because we do not know the day nor hour it will be our turn to meet with God. But then, if we live our lives like children of God, like people of God; the day will not overtake us like a thief. This is because we will be ready and prepared when it happens. That is why as we begin this new liturgical year, let us resolve to make good use of the advent season; by making it a prayerful one that will prepare us for the year, such that it will yield fruits that will last in our lives and journey of faith here on earth. When we are able to accomplish it, then Christmas will be more meaningful to us as we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.
My brothers and sisters in Christ let us resolve from this 1st Sunday of advent to live a true Christian life that is built on love, righteousness and holiness. Thus, building a culture and way of life that prepares us for the heavenly Jerusalem at the end of our earthly pilgrimage.
May God grant us the graces we need to live a life that is rooted in love, so that the new way of life presented to us by this season will bear a lasting fruit. Peace be with you! Amen!