The following is a reflection on the 1st Sunday of Advent Gospel Mark 13:33-37
1st Sunday Advent
As we enter the season of Advent we have a Gospel that tells us to “Be watchful! Be alert!” Be ready because “you do not know when the lord of the house is coming.” This passage has been often interpreted as referring to “the end times” the end of creation when Christ returns as he has promised. The end of the world seems to be a fascination with humanity, with numerous predictions of the end having been made and written about. One man has predicted the end of the world three times during his lifetime explaining each time he was wrong with some excuse or another. The question is did Jesus mean to have every generation that followed in fear that the fire will rain down from heaven to destroy them at any moment? It would make more sense that Jesus meant to give us an instruction, not to live in fear of the end of the world but that we should be personally, spiritually prepared for our own end time.
We all know that we will die, the problem is that we do not know when. If we neglect the state of our souls and do not have ourselves prepared for our eternal life we are not being watchful or alert. This life that God has so generously given us is meant to prepare us for the rest of our lives, after our death. We have a choice, we can use this time for fleeting earthly pleasures or we can conform our lives to the will of our Creator and enjoy eternity with Him as He desires. A great time to work on this conformation is the season of Advent. We can make this time, these 4 short weeks, a time of preparation. We can make time for prayer, regularly scheduled throughout the day, for time of reflection on our lives and what we can work at to bring ourselves closer to God’s plan for us and a time to avail ourselves to the Sacrament of Penance in order to set ourselves right with our generous and forgiving God.
So as we light the candles on our Advent wreaths let us be mindful to take God with us when we leave Church each week and stay prepared by walking with the Lord “all the days of our lives.”