Genesis 49:2, 8-10
As we continue on our Advent journey, we are given ample opportunity to turn and look back upon the journey we have taken through Scripture; to remind ourselves where we have been, and how that helps us to proceed toward our Christmas celebration.
In my own life, I have always yearned to know more about my own family heritage: people, names, places; things that could give me any indication of who I am and where I came from. Today’s Gospel gives us insight into the people that came before us and how all is interconnected.
Advent scriptures give us genealogies, lists of animals and songs of praise. At first glance, they may seem out of place, or we may not understand why they are there. But with these we are taken back to where it all began and they show us how we arrived at where we are today.
As we continue on our Advent journey, we are given ample occasion to turn and look back. We need that reminder of where we have come from so that we can continue to journey with hope for the future. This look back allows us to prepare the way of the Lord at Christmas and to open up our lives to the Christ-child.
Advent is a time for us to enjoy, prepare ourselves for His coming, and reflect on the rich history that has brought us here. Instead of blinding ourselves to everything but Christmas, we should enjoy the journey beforehand. Throughout Advent we are graced with readings, traditions and music that exude our faith and give us the opportunity to prepare our hearts. We take time to clear away all the debris that has built up, so that when He comes the path is clear. As we prepare in these final days of Advent for the coming of Christ at Christmas, let us remind ourselves that we must take time to reflect on our rich Salvation History and prepare, as we should every day, the way of Lord. Taking the time to immerse ourselves in the rich spiritual traditions of Advent, we can truly become those voices crying out in the wilderness. We become the messengers for and proclaiming Christ’s arrival.
So as the hustle and bustle gets faster and louder, let us take time to slow down. It is not about skipping to the end but appreciating the journey ahead. Let us each have a blessed journey as we prepare our hearts and our homes for the Lord.
A voice proclaims in the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD! – Is 40:3
Kim Valdez is a Pastoral Associate at Holy Name Passionist Retreat Center in Houston, Texas.