Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent
During my childhood, I recall my mother often telling me: “Wait! Patience!” Today I find myself repeating the same two words to my children: “Wait! Patience! It is not Christmas yet!”
Waiting requires a special predisposition of our mind, heart and soul. For some, waiting is a form of art—waiting for the best sunset on the perfect day of the year; for the best picture you ever took; waiting to play the right note at the right time that will change an ordinary melody into an extraordinary improvisation; waiting to use a word, thought for a long time that will make the hearts of your loved ones melt on a cold day of winter.
Every year we celebrate different special events. I think about the beginning of a new academic year, the commencement, a birthday or an anniversary. We spend time planning and preparing those events with joy and anticipation and with the desire to surprise the celebrated!
We know what is going to happen! Joy and excitement increase day after day.
Today’s Gospel reading reminds us about the angel Gabriel, sent from God to announce to Mary the good news: she will give birth to a child and become the mother of Jesus. “He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his Kingdom there will be no end." (Lk 1:32-33)
And then came Mary’s waiting time.
What was waiting like for her? We know the circumstances under which Joseph and Mary had to wait for the birth of Jesus. The journey to Bethlehem was not an easy one, running away in search of a safe and peaceful place. No luxuries, no warm and cozy rooms with plenty of food and amenities.
We are on the final week of this Advent season and are very close to celebrating Christmas. Outside our doors, our work place, our schools and university there is somebody waiting. Waiting for a kind word, waiting for a smile, waiting for a warm meal, waiting for a reason to believe.
What about surprising them? They may receive the best present of the year. What about celebrating Jesus’ birth by showing love, mercy and compassion?
Merry Christmas to all of you…but we still need to wait a few days to celebrate the King of Kings!
Assistant Director, Liturgy and Music