Sunday, December 14, 2008

Third Sunday in Advent

Is 61:1-2a, 10-11
1 Thes 5:16-24
Jn 1:6-8, 19-28

You’ve done this, I’ve done this, we have all done this. You see someone walking down the street and you are certain that that is an old friend, so you rush up to them, say their name, only to have then turn and reveal that this is not the person you thought. It’s a complete stranger. Embarrassed, you mutter an apology and turn away. The Levites, priests and Pharisees saw a man, a man crying in the wilderness, and they thought they knew who he was. They were, however, mistaken. John clearly tells them, I am not the Christ. Instead of turning away, however, they ask well then, just who are you? Are you Elijah? Are you the Prophet? Who sent you? John replies that as Isaiah said, he is the voice of one crying, make straight the way of the Lord. He is the forerunner of one those questioning him do not recognize. John plainly tells them there is one among you you do not recognize, one whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie. John’s questioners will fail to recognize Christ in their midst. It’s a failure we all too often share. As we prepare for the celebration of the birth of Christ, as we prepare for Christ’s return, do we recognize Christ in our midst? In the single mother, struggling to care for her family, do we recognize Christ? In the person with mental challenges who tests our patience, do we recognize Christ? In that person that for whatever reason we just can’t stand, do we recognize Christ? In our spouses, our children, our parents, our families, doe we recognize Christ? In our friends, do we recognize Christ? Christ is in our midst, in these people. It is here that we must recognize Christ, or we will not recognize him in that infant we celebrate, or the in the one who is coming again.
Deacon John
Third Sunday in Advent
Dec. 14, 2008