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Second Sunday of Advent

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John the Baptist appeared in the desert proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.  People of the whole Judean countryside and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the Jordan River as they acknowledged their sins.

Advent is a tough time of year.  It comes right before Christ, the worst moment of the year to get anything done!  But if we want to have the best Christmas ever, then we need to get this season right.  

How can I prepare a way for the Lord to come into my life?

What was so remarkable about John?  Was it that he lived in a desert?  Not really.  Was it that he wore camel's hair and a leather belt around his waist?  Big deal.  People in New York City dress like that all the time!!!  Was it that he ate locusts and wild honey?  Hey, to each his own!  So, then, what is it?  

He proclaimed:  "One mightier than I is coming..."

That's big!  That's different!  That's unique!  For we all want to imagine ourselves as being the "Big Thing," even the "Real Deal.” Deep down, we all think we are God!  And we speak and act as if we are!

The first lesson of Advent is this:  "One mightier than I is coming," like it or not!  

So what is Advent?  An opportunity.  An opportunity to allow God to be God, to see God in my neighbor, and to allow others to see God in my words and actions.  

Advent is that time of year to allow the Lord back into our world and our life.

Posted by Fr. Alfonse Nazzaro with
in Hope

First Sunday of Advent

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First Sunday of Advent

Therefore, stay awake!  ...for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.

Advent.  Advent is that time of year when we take a "pause to understand a presence.  It is an invitation to understand that the individual events of the day are hints that God gives us" (Pope Benedict XVI, Homily at First Vespers of Advent, November 28, 2009).

What are you waiting for?  Are you still waiting for something amazing?  Are you still looking for Mr. (or Miss) Right?  Are you still looking for love?  Are you still looking for "proof"?  Are you still looking for happiness?

Guess what?  You're not looking.  Either you're blind or you've fallen asleep!

Awake from your slumber!    Advent is not about appreciating everything and everyone in your life.  Advent is that time of year to be amazed, enchanted, thrilled and excited about everything and everyone in your life.

"Come, let us climb the Lord's mountain" (Is 2:1-5).  From the top everything looks small.  From the bottom everything seems so big.  As we "progress" up the mountain, man and the world appear to get smaller.  But the problem isn't with us learning more, the problem is what happens to us along the way:  our attitude begins to change, and for the worse.

Don't be fooled!  Do you not realize that while you're trying to climb your own mountain, the Lord is descending from his very own?  Is there not a lesson to learn from this?  Come, let us climb the Lord's mountain and descend to our very own.  Then we will see something amazing!

God's Humility.  This morning I read an article entitled:  "Scientists discover that natural wonders trigger belief in God."  In the article there were a couple of pictures, one of the Grand Canyon and another of Niagara Falls.  

What fools!  They missed the point entirely.

Advent is all about getting enchanted by life and allowing God's magical world to cast a spell all over you.  

Are you surprised at how fairy dust can make Wendy fly?  Then be amazed at how a dozen roses can make her cry.  Or how a stare from Peter Pan can make her blush.  

Are you amazed at how Curiosity landed on Mars?  Then be no less amazed at how every Autumn millions of leaves fall to the ground to feed it.

Have you forgotten how three little words, "I love you" kept you in a spell for years?  Or how holding someone's hand can so easily bring you to Wonderland?

This world is all magical!  It's all enchanting!  It's all amazing.  But best of all, it's all true.

The Lord made water blush when he starred into it.  This is no different than how a young man can make a young lady blush simply by starring into her.  

Go ahead, call me a fool, but I am awake and have seen how a gigantic fire, like a revolution, can commence with a simple spark.

Advent is about pausing before a presence and understanding the daily hints that God gives us.  What are you waiting for?  Something amazing?  Well then wake up and open your eyes.

Posted by Fr. Alfonse Nazzaro with