2nd Sunday of Advent.
Scripture Reading:Mark 1:1-8
In 1909 James H. Stanley wrote a song titled “Prepare to meet thy God”. The song goes thus “Careless soul, why will you linger, Wandering from the fold of God? Hear you not the invitation? Oh, prepare to meet thy God. Refrain: ‘Careless soul, oh, heed the warning, For your life will soon be gone; Oh, how sad to face the judgment, Unprepared to meet thy God. ‘Why so thoughtless are you standing, While the fleeting years go by, And your life is spent in folly? Oh, prepare to meet thy God. Hear you not the earnest pleadings, Of your friends that wish you well? And perhaps before tomorrow, You’ll be called to meet your God. If you spurn the invitation, Till the Spirit shall depart, then you’ll see your sad condition, Unprepared to meet thy God.” St. Alphonsus Liguori, laments, “How great is the distress and despair of travellers who discover, just as night is falling, that they have taken the wrong road, and now that they have no time to correct the mistake. Such will be the anguish of those who come to die, realizing that they have given too much time on earth to wordily pursuits, and have not lived for God”
In Prophet Isaiah 40: “Make a straight highway for our God across the desert” is echoed in the opening to Mark’s Gospel, which we read today, which is the stern message of John the Baptist, who proclaimed “a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins” and whose role is to point forward to Jesus. Mark begins his Gospel abruptly: “The beginning of the Good News about Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The “Good News” is an echo of the “good tidings” of Isaiah 40, which, as we have seen, points to the imminent salvation God is going to work for His people. It is the “good news” which constantly challenges us and which should shape our lives. Beloved, prepare the way for the Lord by your repentance, humility, devotions and your life in imitation of Jesus. We are invited to a total change of heart, METANOIA. Let the thoughts be focussed on the things above and not the sinful lots of this world. St. Alphonsus Liguori concludes thus: “The greatest torment for the damned in hell consists in the thought that they have lost their soul, and have lost it through their own fault” What a great pity and mishap?
MASS: VIOLET:Is 40: 1-5.9-11; Ps 85: 9-10. 11-12.13-14 (8); 2 Pt 3: 8-14; Mk 1: 1-82ND SUNDAY OF THE ADVENT
1. Stir up our hearts, O Lord, to prepare the ways of Thine only-begotten Son, that through His coming we may be worthy to serve Thee with purified minds. Who lives and reigns, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen.
Exercise: Christmas is not worth celebrating if your heart is not clean enough to house Jesus.
Meditation: 2 Peter 3:14