Daily Reflection – 12/24/19
And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying, “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people, and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, that we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us; to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant, the oath which he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all the days of our life. And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God, when the day shall dawn upon us from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.(Luke 1:67-79)
Here are few thoughts to fill this moment on the eve of Christ’s birth.
What would Christmas be like without Christ? Meaningless. In fact, everything would be meaningless. A compass without a terrestrial north or south or east or west would be pointless. A watch without arms would be useless. A life without God would be hopeless.
A Christmas without Christ would be a never-ending Advent!
Advent is magical because it comes to an end. The Magi find their King. Their journey has an ending, a happy ending. An Advent without Christmas is worse than the worst imaginable joke! It is like being told that there is a surprise but no surprise ever comes. It is like a child waiting for gifts that never arrive, or a young lady who waits and waits but never hears, “Will you marry me!”
John’s very existence was dependent upon the Lord. You, my child, will be called the prophet of the Most High…You, my child, will go before the Lord to prepare his way…The Lord guides our feet. The Lord shines in our darkest hours…The Lord gives his people knowledge and forgiveness. Christ is better than a compass; He is the sun. He rises from the East, no ifs ands or buts. He rises and I wake up. He determines the day, the night, the hour and the season. I live through Him. He shines, I see. He is the sea, I navigate. He is the rock, I stand on Him. He points, I follow. He walks me through all of life’s long sequences. Advent is holy because Christ awaits us.
Is this true for only Zechariah? Not at all. His canticle is my song. Two weeks ago, I celebrated the 48th anniversary of my ordination. I cannot even begin to express in words the joy that is in my heart for this marvelous and mysterious vocation! The Lord has been kind and merciful to me. He has blessed me beyond belief to minister in his name to those who are suffering and dying. I thank God for having called me. I thank God for the continual courage and the strength to follow Him. I thank God for sending me, like one of his apostles, to enter into the lives of His people.
Christmas is fast approaching. May the Lord continue to be in Christmas, and may He find us ready and willing for Him to enter into the inn of our heart, mind, body and soul.
Prayer of The Day
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord we thank you for your abundant love and mercy, help us to never stray from your goodness. Lord, you alone are the good and right thing for us to follow, help us to stay focused on you. Lord, you are our God and we are your people, may we never forget this and live our life as you would have us. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.
In giving praise to God and spreading His love to prepare for His kingdom we are giving God that which He desires of us. What more perfect way to prepare for our Lord’s coming than in telling of His goodness and preparing His way in the hearts of all those we meet? In this high season of the church, let us all take courage in the Lord and seek to draw closer to Him that we may act in complete confidence and trust of His divine plan for us. May we cast aside the tensions of this world and rest peacefully knowing that the hand of God is guiding us through this life and closer to eternity with Him.