Monday, December 2, 2013
Women of Faith:
They say two things in life are certain: death and taxes. Both evils were created by humans—by our sin, and as a human way to give back to a human “king.”
But God had a much better plan for us, so He gave us a second chance, an “Advent-ure.” He gave us the chance to renew our eternal LIFE by giving us His son, Jesus, who by His own life redeemed our sins. And He asks us to give back to Him, the almighty King, our STEWARDSHIP—a return of Christ’s example—a portion of the gifts He gave us in this lifetime: our time, talent and treasure.
Just as we celebrate Advent to prepare for Christmas, God’s second chance for us includes a lifetime of “Advent-ure,” a time of preparation and reparation. A second chance to choose Him: by our faith, our trust, and our hope and a second chance to choose to live by Christ’s example of love for God and love for each other.
‘In days to come, the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established as the highest mountain and raised above the hills. All nations shall stream toward it; many people’s shall come and say: “Come, let us climb the LORD’s mountain, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may instruct us in his ways, and we may walk in his paths.”’ Is 2:2-3
God planned our “adventures” as a preparation for His coming. He gave us the TIME to climb towards Him to the truth Christ revealed through His Church; the TALENT to stream towards the truth of His instruction; and the TREASURES to walk along His path in the Adventure of life.
He wrote a plan in the Holy words of Scripture. And he gave us the Church (Spirit) to guide us and the Eucharist (food) to sustain us during this adventure.
In true“Advent-ure” we await the birth of His living example, Jesus.
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. ….Therefore, stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. …So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” Mt 24: 37-44
It is not enough to live this adventure just in the weeks leading up to Christmas (as in Noah’s time). My faithful choice means I cannot wait until I “feel” I have the time or it is convenient, but that I must continually prepare and live ready as if every tomorrow will be Christmas, the coming of the flood, and the coming of Jesus the Christ.
And I must constantly be alert to the dangers and the unexpected lures that try to pull me off His path and away from His plan, His hopes and His desires for me to live with Him eternally. I must be as ready today for Christ, as I am every tomorrow into the future.
Life is an adventure—a time of preparation. Life here on earth will have an unknown end. But God’s eternal life has a promise that says: “Brothers and sisters: You know the time; it is the hour now for you to awake from sleep. For our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed; the night is advanced, the day is at hand. Let us then throw off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light; let us conduct ourselves properly as in the day, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in promiscuity and lust, not in rivalry and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the desires of the flesh.” Rom 13: 11-14
Advent, the adventure, this preparation time on earth, is about preparing to put on the Lord Jesus Christ eternally: bearing our sacrifices and putting on the armor of Christ. Adventure is not about being happy or living for our own selfish desires or through our own making, adventure is about rejoicing that we have God with us on this journey.
Adventure is about loving each other (in service) and living that adventure in joy (rejoicing in holiness and peace) of our many blessings. Advent is living in the sure knowledge that Christ can be found in the center of our lives—all the time! Because God is good, all the time!
Heavenly Father: You graciously give both Your son and Your Church to show me how to live the “Advent-ure” of life. You have promised Your mercy and Your everlasting love to all who have faith, to all who are ready. Help me to prepare for Your coming by honoring your commands and by not being caught off guard when You arrive. I place my trust in the Advent of your promises. Amen.
Prepare, Be ready, and Live the “Adventure” in Christ’s peace, love and joy.