In today’s Gospel, Jesus urges us to be watchful and to be alert — for we do not know the time or day when the Lord is coming.
Advent is the liturgical season that invites us to prepare for the Lord’s birth at Christmas, but it also has a second invitation: one that prompts us to prepare for the return of Jesus Christ for the last judgement.
St. John Paul II called Advent an intense training that directs us toward Jesus — “who already came, who will come, and who comes continuously.”
We have a few things to focus on this Advent: how Jesus Christ was born a child in Bethlehem — how He already came into our world, how He exists for us today, and how He will come again.
The question we should ask ourselves today as we begin this season of Advent is, “Are we ready to receive Him?”
St. Teresa Calcutta put it this way: “Before the birth of Jesus, his parents asked for a simple dwelling place, but there was none. If Mary and Joseph were looking for a home for Jesus, would they choose… your heart, and all it holds?”
Think about St. Teresa’s prompt: would Mary and Joseph entrust our Lord, Jesus Christ, to you? Is your heart and home open for Him? Have you prepared a place for Him? What are the obstacles keeping you from doing that, if any?
Just as we would prepare our homes for a guest to visit, we must consider how the most important guest that comes to visit us this Christmas is Jesus, and so, our greatest preparation should be for His coming.
What do you need to work on before His arrival?
Let’s pray that we will do the necessary work to be able to fully welcome Jesus this Christmas, and when He comes once again.
Annie Deddens is a writer and producer. She runs a prayer ministry with her husband, called Pray More Novenas. She also writes about living with greater faith (hope & love, too) as a Catholic wife on her blog, Catholic Wife, Catholic Life.