Shalom! Peace be with you. Today is the Second Sunday of Advent and we light the candle of Peace.
Once again we have the inspiring readings from the Old Testament. Isaiah’s words about the stump of Jesse promise hope and new life. Out of the stump of Jesse a shoot shall spring forth. The unbelievable will happen–believe anyway. Wolves and lambs shall live together. Leopards, kids, calves and lions shall all be led by a child. Those unlike the other shall peacefully dine together.. The dangers of relationships that are not harmonious shall pass. No one will hurt or destroy on God’s holy mountain. How amazing will that day be!
The psalmist sings out: May righteousness flourish and peace abound!” The Lord saves the one in need. How many times has it been you that the Lord is longing to save?
In the second reading we are encouraged to live in harmony with one another, welcoming everyone as Christ himself welcomes, in the name of God. What if this day, we began to realize that all are our equal, all our family, and all are treated with respect? What would we change about what we do and how we do it?
In the Gospel we meet John the Baptist, not the type of person people rush to welcome, with his harsh message and wild appearance. How do we prepare the way of the Lord? How do we make straight the crookedness of our lives? We are unworthy indeed, and yet this Advent, each of us is invited to prepare the hay in the lowly stable upon which the Christ Child will rest. Each of us is given the task of being Light to the world, of bearing hope and peace to those who sit in darkness. Shine brightly this week.