Advent begins today. It is a time of waiting before we celebrate the Incarnation of Christ. We anticipate Christmas mass where we will sing the beautiful hymns rejoicing over the birth of our Savior. The Gloria is sung again. It’s a time of nativity scenes and gift giving. If you can resist the temptation to get caught up in the secularization of Christmas; it truly is a beautiful time of year.
Though we love the read the nativity narratives the Church uses this time to prepare us for Christ’s Second Coming. The second reading for the First Sunday of Advent follows:
Brothers and sisters:
You know the time;
it is the hour now for you to awake from sleep.
For our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed;
the night is advanced, the day is at hand.
Let us then throw off the works of darkness
and put on the armor of light;
let us conduct ourselves properly as in the day,
not in orgies and drunkenness,
not in promiscuity and lust,
not in rivalry and jealousy.
But put on the Lord Jesus Christ,
and make no provision for the desires of the flesh. ROM 13:11-14
We wait now for Christ to come again. Many people read “it is the hour now for you to awake from your sleep” and get worried that this is really the time for the world to come to an end as we know it. People have read these same words for almost two thousand years and I’m sure there have been countless people that also feared the second coming in their lifetimes.
The interesting thing about it is that they were right. Now is the hour for us to awake. For all of us will die and we will face the moment of judgment. Our salvation is in question right now. We have to live our lives with a purpose. That purpose is the same for everyone. No matter what our state in life or what our occupation or circumstances are; we are all ultimately aiming for the same goal. We want to live our eternity with God in heaven. What are we doing now to live as Jesus taught? What must we change? What are we waiting for? None of us know if we have tomorrow.
We don’t have to be fearful about when certain events will occur because for all of us they will occur at some point. Like the old saying goes: no one gets out of this world alive. Some day we will meet Jesus and we will account for the live he gave us.
So too, you also must be prepared,
for at an hour you do not expect,
the Son of Man will come. Mt 24:44