In talking with my sister this week, both of us have seemed to reach our saturation point on the two Hallmark channels – we are looking for something else. This got me wondering – what are we looking for in our life that will last? You and I at times can go on binges that take up our time and energy and then we lose interest and begin looking for something else. What we begin to realize is that what we are looking for does not seem to last.
The Church uses the season of Advent to show us truly what will last. That is the gift that our heavenly Father gave to us – His Son, Jesus. Jesus came, not only to redeem us, but also to remind us that His Father wants a personal relationship with us that doesn’t grow dim or lukewarm. Advent prepares us to continually celebrate the incarnation that is Jesus becoming truly man, while at the same time, not losing His divinity. What Jesus reminds us is that He is the embodiment of the Father’s unconditional love for us. Just as a married couple will respond to one another and allow their love to continue to grow each day of their life, so Jesus wants our love to grow in the same way. A married couple knows that their love for each other will be present to them wherever they go. In the same way, whether we are in church for Mass, or in prayer or at work, we know that the love of God for us is ever present. This is the purpose of Advent to remind us of the great love affair that God has with each and every one of us.
So as we go about our Christmas shopping and sending of our Christmas cards, what gift can we give to God? The gift is a simple one, one that we already possess. The gift is US. We know that the gift of Jesus keeps on giving, so let us be like Him and keep giving ourselves.
God bless, Fr. Ray