Daily Advent Reflection
The College of New Rochelle
Sunday, December 08, 2013
Martha Counihan, OSU
This reading from Isaiah is full of the paradox of following and practicing one’s faith. I think to myself: “this is the ‘bad breath’ reading—that slays the wicked. Fidelity to God’s law results in these striking contrasts of life: the wolf and the lamb, the hay-eating lion, and the baby playing close to danger, unafraid, unharmed. From a little sprig of a root, there will spring forth a savior, again, a paradox that something, Someone great will spring forth. And foreigners, Gentiles, we will seek out the Lord who is coming.
The psalm response reminds me that justice will flourish, not in MY time, but in God’s time.
The reading from Romans reminds us that Jesus comes to Gentiles, us, as well as to the Chosen people; this theme re-appears in Matthew’s gospel. John the Baptist would today be called a “strange dude”. He wanted to attract attention, and he did by his behavior, clothing, words. I sometimes encounter persons like him, and which may make me feel uncomfortable, maybe even a bit afraid. John is telling me, us, to change my ways. “Welcome one another,” “Produce good fruit,” loud and clear messages, very appropriate for me during Advent in a world replete with tinsel, trash, and useless stuff. What “good fruit” and “welcome” can I share and give this coming Christmas?