Thursday of the Third Week of Advent
“Do not be afraid, Zechariah, because your prayer has been heard.” (Luke 1:13)
Imagine hearing those words spoken by the Angel Gabriel, but that instead of Zechariah’s name it was yours that you heard and that your heart’s desire was to be granted! What would be your response/reaction? Would you believe that God will fulfill all His promises just as He said? In preparing the way for a Savior, we see from today’s Scriptures readings the wondrous miracle of two barren couples who conceive and bear sons ‒ Samson in the Old Testament and John the Baptist in the New Testament ‒ sons who are called by God to bring hope, deliverance, and restoration at a time of spiritual darkness and difficulty for the people of God.
Advent is a time of anticipating the fulfillment of God’s promises to us, a time to renew our hope and confidence in God's faithfulness to the covenant He made with His people. In life, it is easy to dwell on the struggle of our lives and of our faith, for as humans we often feel overwhelmed by our duties, daily responsibilities, the stress of finals; it is easy to forget to trust in the Lord and His plan for our lives. Growing in holiness can be difficult, and we can easily doubt God’s plan as Zechariah did when the angel appeared to him. We must remember that in our weakness Christ can use us as His witnesses, for we must rely on His grace for strength. With only six days left until we celebrate the birth of Jesus, let us take time to pause and reflect on God’s presence in our lives and what He has done for us, and as we wait for Christ’s birth let us ask God to open our hearts to see His will unfolding in our lives and so prepare us to receive the Prince of Peace.
Sister Maria Elizabeth Nakku, IHMR
Graduate Student, School of Education
O Root of Jesse’s stem, sign of God’s love for all his people:
come to save us without delay!