Have you ever heard anyone ask, perhaps a preacher or a Bible study teacher, “If you knew that Jesus was coming back tomorrow, what would you do with today?”
Advent can be the better question and the better answer. In fact, Advent doesn’t ask, “What if?” Advent reminds us for twenty-eight days that Jesus is coming back and that we can be ready in every dimension … except to know the day and the hour, which is the one thing we’ve already been excused from discovering!
Our Cor Unum Advent question might be, “How can we best become watchful in this world?” or “What does it mean to be a virgin, waiting for the Bridegroom, with plenty of oil for our lamps?” There is an Advent heart in this monastery; we are ever looking to be both watchful and ready. We watch over the souls of those we love, over the Church, the Body of Christ, and over our own hearts, guarding them righteously now and not in selfishness. We have long since ceased to think in terms of keeping or losing our salvation; we want to be saved to the uttermost, and nations with us!
A little more to the point for us would be even this version of the question, “If you knew that Jesus was coming back this time next year, how would you order your days?” After all, if He were coming tomorrow, we could leave the electricity bill unpaid and we could stay home from work and we could call and ask forgiveness of someone we would never have to confront again.
Oh, Lord God, may this season be the Advent for us of a life fixed on the hope of our salvation in all its fullness! May it be the blossoming of renewed joy in the accomplished work of Christ Jesus, life, death, resurrection, and intercession! May the Kingdom of God be to us the goal of our sojourning here!
That’s a lot, let’s be honest! So let’s ask for more! May the Advent of Christ our King be the fullness in our hearts. May His arrival by the Holy Spirit be the newness of life that we need and that our families need to see in truth.
Oh, Lord, when we asked, You came to us, but not, in Jesus’ name, not like the Genie in the Bottle! No! May this season be the Advent of bright hope and stalwart patience and works of faith that work! … all by the arrival and the abiding of the Holy Spirit.
My goodness, that’s a longer tally than my grandchildren’s Christmas list!
Hooray! It’s not like our God is checking to see if we’ve been naughty or nice … You, Father, know the number of hairs on our heads, and You are ushering us out of darkness and into light, even as we strike match to those Advent candles. Amen.
photo courtesy of Catholic History Nerd, blogger