November 30, 2008
First Sunday of Advent
Jesus said to his disciples: “Be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come. It is like a man traveling abroad. He leaves home and places his servants in charge, each with his own work, and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch. Watch, therefore; you do not know when the Lord of the house is coming, whether in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning. May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!’”
Introductory Prayer: Lord Jesus, I all too easily forget that you deserve the first spot in my life. At least right now I recognize you as my King and Master. I know you are present with me now and that you wish to fill me with your grace. Thank you for your friendship; I offer my weak love in return. I love you, Lord, and wish you to reign in my life.
Petition: Lord Jesus, help me to stay vigilant to your holy inspirations.
1. “You Do Not Know When the Master of the House Will Come.”
Lord Jesus, I am not the master of my life; you are. I therefore ought not to fritter away my time simply doing as I please. I will need to render to you an account of my stewardship over my life, which really belongs to you, my Creator and Redeemer. What will you ask of me when you come for my soul? Do my daily actions demonstrate your ownership of my life?
2. Keep Alert
Lord Jesus, this Gospel may sound a bit harsh, but I thank you for its message. You’re reminding me how important it is to live my Christian life in a state of healthy tension – a tension that doesn’t imply frustration or anxiety of any sort, but rather is a constant desire to draw closer to you and be more like you. Just as a lover is exquisitely attentive to fulfill the every desire of the beloved, I should be watchful for the least occasion to please you.
3. When He Comes Will I Be Asleep?
This Gospel makes me reflect on my need to receive pardon in the sacrament of reconciliation. The definitive moment of my death, that very special face-to-face encounter with you, Lord, might come when I am not expecting it. I must be ready for that moment. I want to be able to look you fully in the eye. I have sought to please you in my actions, and when I have failed, I have turned to you through confession to be washed of my sins. I want to hear you say to me: “Well done, good and faithful servant. Come share my joy” (Matthew 25:23).
Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, help me to “stay awake” in my daily life, keeping heaven as my true goal in all that I do. Help me to stand ready in every moment of my life to be called into your presence.
Resolution: I will set a regular time to receive the sacrament of reconciliation frequently.
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