Today’s readings are full of opportunities to reflect on the foundational experience of Christianity – faith. They remind us that God often shatters our concepts of how God acts in history and in our lives and invites us to take those first steps, even in the midst of uncertainty!
Leadership – whether it is in the church or in society – is not about self-protection, self-aggrandizement, or self-enrichment. Rather it is about being of service, a duty of care, and sharing freely the gifts we have been given.
The words from the beginning of the Gospel of John are meant to be read and proclaimed slowly, contemplatively, letting the wonder of God’s love in the incarnation of Christ fill our minds and hearts.
These last Advent readings invite us to pause … breathe … and to become aware of the sacredness of our lives lived in the grace of God, made present in our flesh through Christ.
These readings remind us that God has a plan for history – our common history and our personal ones, and that God is putting that plan into action through Christ.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus recognizes in John the Baptist the spiritual return of the prophet Elijah – one of ancient Israel’s greatest prophets, whose resume is highlighted in the first reading from the book of Sirach.