Brothers & Sisters:
I am inviting you to capture the mood of the Advent Season as it changes Sunday by Sunday. Advent 1, the mood was one of watchfulness. We needed to be watchful for at least two reasons. One, there were false teachers who were ready to deceive us, and two, no one knew the day or the hour when the Lord would come, so we were to be vigilant at all times.
Today we are invited to change our mood to one of hopeful anticipation. God’s messengers were charged to comfort God’s people. “Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God” (Isaiah 40:1). They were to announce that those who were in bondage would soon be released, and the trouble they were going through would soon be over. There is no question that this has been a difficult year for most of us, and that we stand in need of a word of encouragement. We are not called to close our eyes to the reality of the problems we are facing. Financial woes are all around us, and in many cases they appear to be insurmountable. Health problems abound and the far reaching impact of first, Chikungunya then COVID 19 and more recently Monkey Pox has not yet been fully assessed. Isaiah sees the answer to our dilemma in the revelation of God’s glory. “Then the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together..” (40:5)
The Psalmist pleas for God’s favour and help. “Will you not revive us again, so that your people may rejoice in you?” He listens for God to answer him and then he confidently affirms, “Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him, that his glory may dwell in our land.” He had no doubt that God who is known for his steadfast love and faithfulness would not fail them. He could not be the God he is and do otherwise.
Our hope then is on the arrival of God in our midst in the person of his Son Jesus Christ which is what we celebrate at Christmas. John the Baptist, the forerunner of Jesus, now enters the Advent story to announce the imminent arrival of Jesus. The invitation then is to banish despair and get ready for celebration, for better days are coming. It is appropriate then for us to burst into song:
Soon and very soon, we are going to see the King….
No more crying there, we are going to see the King….
Alleluia! Alleluia! We are going to see the King