Is. 61:1-2,10-11; 1Thess 5:16-24; Jn 1:6-8,19-28
Once a teacher asked her religion class, “Where can you find God?” One student stood and replied, “In church”. Another one volunteered, “At home, in school, in the parks.” “Correct”, the teacher said.
One serious child also offered his answer: “Ma’am, we can find God in our comfort room.” The answer threw the teacher off balanced. “Why your God could be found in your comfort room?” asked the teacher. “Because in the morning at home when papa is hurrying and the door of our toilet is closed, he bangs the door shouting: ‘Oh, my God, are you still in there?’” said the child.
Christ’s coming is one of the themes of today’s gospel. The Jews send a delegation from Jerusalem to ask John the Baptist if he is the long-awaited Messiah who has finally come. “I am not the Messiah,” answered John. “But there is one among you whom you do not recognize the one who is to come after me, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to unfasten.”
Obviously, this does not refer to the pagans or atheists of our times as a cause of John’s disappointment although they are by no means excluded, what is more alluded to is whether we who prefer to be Christians have really recognized and accepted Jesus Christ in our life. Or Christ may have remained a stranger in our lives even during this Christmas, his birthday anniversary.
All throughout the centuries, Jesus has been coming into the lives of His people. All through history people keep looking for the Lord to come, to be born again, and they keep missing His coming right under their noses.
Are we much different today? We may be strictly orthodox in our observance of the laws of the church or know all the right answers to the questions of catechism, but do we really know and experience our Lord in a deep personal way and in our concrete lives as Christians?
Actually, God continually reaches out toward us, but we resist his coming by hiding behind layers of distractions. Christ wants us to speak in the silence of prayer but we drown His voice with noise from TV sets and radios. Christ wants to talk to us through His words. Hearing God’s word on Sundays is not like listening to cassette tape being played. When God’s word is proclaimed, it enlightens our minds on what to do, it challenges us and tests our wills, and to move and inspires our hearts. He comes in the sacraments especially in the sacraments of the Holy Eucharist and Confession, and yet what we do for these sacraments?
There are other means on how God comes to our lives. The list will include events both good and bad, people we encounter daily, the beauty of nature, books, plays and movies that have cultural and Christian values, heroes of our days and others.
The season of advent is a time for us to get in tune with all these means in which Christ comes, so that when he comes at Christmas we will be ready to recognize Him, regardless of the form in which he chooses to appear.
As Angelus Silesius said: “Do not seek God in outer space, your heart is the only place in which to meet Him face to face.”
See Today’s Readings: Cycle B,
Back to: Third Sunday of Advent (Year B)