November 27, 2022
First Sunday of Advent (Year A)
Readings for Today
Jesus said to his disciples: “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man.” Matthew 24:37–39
Are you awake? Spiritually speaking? As we begin the liturgical season of Advent, we are given the future coming of the Son of God to ponder. As this passage goes on, Jesus says, “Therefore, stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.”
By the “day your Lord will come,” we should understand three things. The first coming of Christ is obviously that which we most clearly ponder in Advent and Christmas. The unity of human nature with divine nature, in the Person of Jesus, is truly awe-inspiring. But that already took place long ago.
Thus, a second coming of Christ that we must continually ponder is His coming by grace, every moment of every day of our lives, once we have chosen to freely give our lives over to His service, for His glory, in accord with His will. When we live with such an interior disposition by which we seek His ongoing “coming” by grace, then we will find that we need to continually “stay awake!” If we do not, then we can be certain that we will miss countless opportunities to become more united to Christ every day and to be used as an instrument of that very grace for His service and glory. If we do not diligently build a habit of becoming attentive to every prompting of grace in our lives, then we will, unquestionably, begin to become “drowsy” and will fall asleep, spiritually speaking.
A wonderful measure of our daily attentiveness to the innumerable gifts of grace given to us every day is to also consider how attentive we are to the final and glorious coming of Christ at the end of time. Just as Jesus explains, most people will pay little attention to this final coming, presuming it will not even be in their lifetimes. But if you have that attitude, then you have completely missed the point. The point is preparedness—today, tomorrow and always. True preparedness for the final coming of Christ will not only help you enter the mysteries of these Advent and Christmas seasons by which we ponder the first coming of Christ, it will also help you form a habit of daily attentiveness to grace.
Reflect, today, upon how ready you are for the final coming of Christ at the end of time. Are you ready if Christ were to come today? If not, understand that a lack of preparedness for the final coming also means a lack of preparedness to celebrate His first coming at Christmas long ago, as well as His daily comings by grace. Prepare today. Do not wait. If you do, God will daily transform you in ways that are glorious beyond comprehension.
My ever-present Lord, You come to us, day and night, calling to us, leading us and offering to enter our lives. Please help me to always be attentive to You and to always open my heart fully to Your daily coming by grace. Jesus, I trust in You.