A homily for the First Sunday of Advent
In days to come.
In days to come, the prophet says,
all people shall climb the Lord’s mountain.
In days to come, weapons of war and destruction will be melted down and transformed into tools of peace and creation.
In days to come, nations will no longer wage war on one another.
In days to come, strenuously urges the prophet –
IN DAYS TO COME: WE WILL WALK IN THE LIGHT OF THE LORD!
In days to come, says Paul the apostle, we will depart from
the ways of darkness and sin.
In days to come, we will put on an armor of light.
In days to come, we will live as disciples are meant to live
– not in rivalry or jealousy, but in goodness and compassion.
In days to come, those who believe in him will put on the Lord Jesus Christ – as if to be as one with him.
In days to come, all the prophecies will come to pass.
In days to come, the Sun of Justice will shine with his healing rays.
In days to come, an uncertain young mother’s fear will be abated.
In days to come, a confused and dreaming fiancé will come to his senses.
In days to come, a strong, challenging voice from the wilderness
will be heard
– and, remarkably, somewhat, at least slightly – his cry for repentance will be heeded.
In days to come … if we are attentive
… if we are prepared
… if we’ll allow the time, the patience, the silence, the prayer
… if we are alert
… if we stay away.
In days to come, the kingdom of God will be accomplished.
In days to come, the pleading of strange words
– Maranatha. Emmanuel. – will be honored.
In days to come, on a day, at an hour, we do not expect, and cannot know – and probably would rather not know
– the Son of Man will come.
But, now is also that day, already that day …
Now is already that day to slow down … to listen …
… to watch … to be silent – more, some, as hard as that may be.
Now is already that day to give at least a little time …
… to pray … to reconcile
… to find the darkness in ourselves into which we might allow a spark of light.
Now is already that day to learn peace instead of war …
… to welcome instead of reject
… to affirm rather than condemn
… to protect rather than destroy
… to be careful rather than complacent.
Now is already that day –
– to stay awake – the ultimate, essential challenge of a disciple
– to be alert
– to walk – to walk in the light of the Lord. TL