|The day is at hand|
First Sunday of Advent—A
Are you ready?
While much of our consumer society has already begun celebrating the “holiday season” (weeks ago, it seems), we are told on the First Sunday of Advent: “Stay awake! Be prepared. At an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”
How do we prepare for the unexpected? Perhaps the answer is simpler than it seems. When we are expecting a special guest to come into our home, we usually know the approximate hour, but our true focus is really not on the time of the guest’s arrival. Rather, it is on being fully present to that guest whenever he or she arrives. We want the guest to feel welcome, comfortable, at home.
As Christians, we believe Jesus already dwells among us—in Word and Sacrament, and in the life of the Church of which we are members. But are we present? Have we, as St. Paul says, “put on the Lord Jesus Christ” and made him at home within us? Are we attentive to the moments and circumstances into which the unexpected light of the Lord is born?
Our annual celebration of Advent—which means “Coming”—invites us to become increasingly present to the arrival of our Savior each and every day of our lives. By preparing for his coming year after year, we prepare for the Final Coming of Christ—that hour that encompasses eternity.
Let us, then, be present, for “our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed.”