Second Sunday of Advent
Open today’s readings in another window to read along.
“For he proclaims peace to his people.” (Ps 23) These days it is hard to see this proclamation in our world, we wonder where the peace is. We’re looking for peace in others, for others, in government, at work, everywhere, and often we just don’t see it. Given the Advent season, the song popped in my head, “Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me.” Imagine if everyone approached life with this attitude, let peace begin with me. But is peace simply an attitude?
Kindness and truth shall meet;
justice and peace shall kiss.
Truth shall spring out of the earth,
and justice shall look down from heaven. (Ps 23)
Can you image that day? What a day!!! It feels forever, lifetimes away! But to God, it is all in the blink of His eye. “With the Lord one day is like a thousand years and a thousand years like one day.The Lord does not delay his promise, as some regard ‘delay’” (2 Pt 3). Advent is time that we reflect on His plan for our salvation. We are in the midst of it, without delay. Isaiah prophesied on behalf of the Lord, “Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you; he will prepare your way.” (Is 40) God made good on that prophesy and sent us His only son, Christ Jesus 2,000 years ago… so, only two days ago to God ;).
Since everything is to be dissolved in this way,
what sort of persons ought you to be,
conducting yourselves in holiness and devotion,
waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God…
Therefore, beloved, since you await these things,
be eager to be found without spot or blemish before him, at peace. (2 Pt 3)
God’s grace sure is a gift, isn’t it? And so are our lifetimes, as we need all of that time to cooperate with God’s grace because only He can make us worthy of His promises , “Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him”. (Ps 23) The four candles of the Advent wreath symbolize each of the four thousand years God’s people awaited the arrival of the first coming of Our Savior since Adam and Eve. Advent is also a time where we, the beneficiaries of the New Covenant, look forward to His second coming with anticipation and preparedness. We strive for holiness, keeping close to the Sacraments that God has provided for us such that we can be “found without spot or blemish before him, at peace.” (2 Pt 3) God divinely provides for our peace filled purification through His Church, the Bride of Christ (Eph 5). Peace is more than an attitude, it is God’s sanctifying grace in us.
As the Christmas season brings about its busy-ness and bustle and you find yourself bewildered, “Where is Christ in this Christmas?!”, return to Christ in the Eucharist for peace, and turn to God in the confessional for some spot and blemish removal ;).
“Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me.”