Two thoughts before Christmas: A homily for the Fourth Sunday of Advent (B)

advent.jpgAdvent ends and Christmas begins in only a few hours.  Two thoughts to help us get ready.

  1. Imagine Mary at this time 2000 some years ago.  Sitting there, knowing who is to come, knowing what is to happen…in only a matter of hours.  Can you imagine!  Listen to what St Ambrose says–The child leaps in the womb; the mother is filled with the Holy Spirit, but not before her son.  Once the Son has been filled with the Holy Spirit in her womb, he fills his mother with the same Spirit. What St Ambrose is saying is that Jesus, flooded himself by the holy spirit, floods his mother with the holy spirit.  The Spirit emanates from Jesus within her, it proceeds and flows out of the one she has within her.  Folks–the same is with us. Mary had Jesus within her!  And so do we.  We who receive the Eucharist, we receive Jesus inside!  And flowing out from Jesus within us, just as with Mary, is this ability to do the divine!  Every time we love, every time we forgive, every time we do anything in the name of God….I think for example of our ancestors who built this church, or all the spiritual powerhouses who have written so much poetry, so many hymns, and all those who have produced so much beautiful Christian artwork…so many things….whenever we do these things, we are giving birth to the Lord!  How will you give birth to the Lord this Christmas?
  2. The second thing is simpler.  Where do you need Jesus to be born in your life?  Jesus came into the darkness and dirtiness of a manger.  That is where God decided to enter the world.  There is nothing in your life too dark or dirty for the Lord.  I look at the manger here. There is an emptiness. B3ecuase Jesus is not there.  Where is there an emptiness in your life?  Consider all that, and invite Jesus to be born there. Maybe it’s a relationship or a fear or doubt, or an addiction or sin. Invite Jesus to be born there. And watch and see what he’ll do.

See you at Christmas.