It is a collection of daily Reflections for Advent 2015 based on the scripture readings of the day and the Advent traditions of generations past and present. It is a downloadable reflection book. Here is an example of our first entry.
November 29: First Sunday of Advent
If you live in the United States, by the time you get to Mass you probably have had your fill of Thanksgiving leftovers (and relatives). You survived the hype of Black Friday and the anticipation of Cyber Monday. By the time the opening hymn is sung we are already bombarded with “warm fuzzy” Christmas music in the malls, annual TV specials of feel good stories, and seemingly endless to-do lists. Even the most sincere follower of Jesus can get caught up in the onslaught of the commercial sentimentalism of Christmas.
In our churches, we hear a very different message: “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on earth nations will be in dismay, perplexed by the roaring of the sea and the waves. People will die of fright in anticipation of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.” (Luke 21) These words sound more appropriate for a cable TV apocalyptic moviethon with earthquakes, zombies, and the like. Each subsequent generation has interpreted the signs differently but the core message remains the same – something big is going to happen someday that will change the very nature of our world and society.
How are we to prepare for this? A Secret Santa gift is not going to cut it! Well, Jesus tells us the how to prepare and the prophet Jeremiah tells us the reason. A little later after making the above statement, Jesus tells the crowd “Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise like a trap…Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent.” Jeremiah prophesizes that those who are prepared “shall be safe and Jerusalem shall dwell secure.”
How appropriate and wise that on the first weekend of the official Christmas shopping season, our Church challenges us and reassures us. The Church asks us to ponder a provoking question: How do we avoid (or reduce) the drowsiness and anxiety in our lives of these next four weeks?
If you are interested in downloading the complete set of reflections go to http://www.everydaycatholicism.com/store/p3/God_in_Real_Time.html. Even though this is a free item you need to download the reflections through our purchase cart.
Wishes for a wonderful Advent season. If you feel this would be useful to someone else, please feel free to pass on our link.
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