Saturday of the First Week of Advent
Isaiah 30:19-21, 23-26
Matthew 9:35-10:1, 5a, 6-8
Christmas as a child in the 50’s was the most exciting time of the year for me. New catalogues filled with colorful pictures of bikes, games, and clothes-everything you could possible dream of-started coming in the mail daily after Thanksgiving. I would studiously look through each new arrival, wondering if I would be so lucky as to get a new Erector Set or maybe a new Lionel train set like Dwight, my neighbor had?
For me life hasn’t changed much here in my seventh decade of life. Oh, I stopped watching TV because I find myself more interested in the advertisements than the actual shows. What they call "reality" really doesn’t fit my sense of that at all. I’ve stopped all the catalogues in hopes of saving a few trees, but I still dream of winning the lottery, finding that perfect home and solving all the great mysteries of life.
In my more sober moments however, I’ve learned the truth of today’s responsorial taken from psalm 147: "Blessed are all who wait for the Lord." I’ve learned that
waiting to win the lottery, hoping in any kind of Santa Claus is nowhere as exciting as waiting for the Lord, "the Lord who is good and gracious. The Lord who rebuilds my life. He gathers the dispersed, heals the brokenhearted and binds up our wounds. He sustains the lowly and casts the wicked to the ground." What more could I want? I can’t wait!
Dan O’Donnell is a Passionist Partner and a longtime friend of the Passionists. He lives in Chicago.