We can grow closer to God and those around us by opening ourselves to prayer and charitable deeds this Advent
Reflections on the readings for the First Sunday of Advent (December 2, 2018): JER 33:14-16; PS 25:4-5,8-9,10,14; 1 THES 3:12 – 4:2; LK 21:25-28,34-36
MISSIO offers “Mission In Scripture” to nurture a missionary heart, providing reflections on the missionary themes in the readings of Sundays, Feast Days and Holy Days.
The readings for this first Sunday in the season of Advent invite us to get ready not just for the lovely commemoration of Jesus’ birth at Christmas, but also to look ahead thoughtfully to the very last days of the world.
St. Paul offered a beautiful prayer for the early Christians who were deeply concerned when Christ would come again. “May the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you, so as to strengthen your hearts, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all His holy ones” (1 Thessalonians 3:12-13).
We need to entrust ourselves to the Lord’s care and guidance all the days of our lives. He wants us to recognize and return His love as well as to love each other. We have absolutely no control over the end of the world – only Almighty God does. But one day we will die and one day we will face Christ at His Second Coming. Neither is a time for fear if we sincerely do our best to follow Christ’s way of love and mercy. If we forgive others and help them with their burdens, if we offer thanksgiving to our Lord for His blessings, He will call us to Himself. And for us, the Coming will truly be a homecoming to heaven.
Suggested missionary action: Let us celebrate Advent in a special way, such as setting up an Advent wreath. We can light a candle and say a prayer each evening as a family if possible. And we should always remember those who are alone and invite them to join us as often as we can.
Celebrate Advent with the missions of the Church. Visit MISSIO.org.