Meditation for the Day

Thursday of the Second Week of Advent, December 10

May Our Hearts Always Be Filled with an Abiding Trust in God’s Providential Love, for Advent Constantly Reminds Us that Our God Is Always with Us, that He Is Always Near to Us.

We hear God speaking to us today in our First Reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah, “I am the LORD, your God, who grasp your right hand; It is I who say to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’”

Life’s journey, for some people, can become very lonely at times, and, occasionally, we can feel exceedingly alone even in the midst of a crowd of people whom we have known for years. Even children with loving parents can experience this, and so can husbands and wives who are devoted to each other.

At times, this sense of isolation and loneliness is brought on by difficulty somewhere in our lives – be it relational, emotional, financial, health related, or whatever the burden may seem to be.

It is not uncommon for many to feel that this heavy secret or private burden cannot be shared but must be borne without help or anyone’s assistance. And sometimes, it may be just our weariness that makes us withdraw and sit all alone inside.

Yet, there are also those occasions within one’s life in which he or she has no control over the circumstances or the outcome which affects one in a very personal and real way. Becoming homeless is one such example. Another would be a disease which can, all of a sudden, appear out of nowhere and attack one’s immune system. Or the sudden and unexpected death of a loved one can affect those left behind with feelings of sadness and emptiness.

Instances such as these, and many others like them, can leave us with feelings of being deserted or abandoned and facing life with no support, no encouragement and no comfort. For some, especially for those who do not have a strong foundation of faith in their lives, there can be bitterness, particularly when we know we have done nothing to deserve the circumstances in which we may find ourselves.

Walking alone, feeling that we are adrift especially for any length of time, can plunge us into a deep valley of despair, from which escape can sometimes seem impossible. It is at times like these when we need to take a step back and listen closely to God’s words to us as He speaks through the prophet Isaiah: “I am the LORD, your God, who grasp your right hand; It is I who say to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’”

In our Gospel today, Jesus is reminding us that, to be members of the Kingdom of Heaven, we may have to bear with sufferings which will come our way. John the Baptist was no exception, for his sufferings included imprisonment and beheading – all because he heralded the coming of God’s Kingdom.

It was violence which took his life, as it did all the martyrs who lived their faith to the fullest – and who have become for us the Church Triumphant, together with Christ in all His Radiant Splendor!

Our role in life as faithful Christians may not be as glorious as was the Baptist’s, but our journey is no less important. And Christ promised us that this journey which we take on this side of Heaven will be fraught with difficulties from time to time!

And not one of us is exempt – not you, not me. Yet, it is the journey of such suffering, in whatever form it may take, no matter how deeply it may hurt, which gives life meaning, for it allows us to identify with the Cross which Christ Himself bore for each of us.

Whatever our trouble may be, whatever challenges you and I may have to face in life, let us invite our Lord to become a part of our lives, asking Him to take us by the hand. Let us not be afraid, for we are not alone! We never were! And no matter how bleak the circumstances in life may become, God is always there, and always will be!

For it is the very life of Christ Himself, from the manger in a small stable to the hill of Calvary, which gives each of us hope.

During this season of Advent, we are each invited to accompany Mary and Joseph as they travel toward Bethlehem in expectation. Advent also invites each of us to realize that we travel toward our own Bethlehem in hope. Sometimes what we long for seems to be far beyond our reach, but that Eternal Voice will never fail to keep speaking to the innermost regions of our hearts, “Fear not, I will help you.”

May the consolation of Jesus Christ always fill our hearts with an abiding trust in His providential Love, no matter how dark or deep the valley in life may at times seem. Advent constantly reminds us that our God is always with us, that He is always near to us.

And Jesus says to you and me today, “Whoever has ears ought to hear.”

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.

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Scripture for the Day

  • “I am the LORD, your God, who grasp your right hand; It is I who say to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’” (Isaiah 41:13)
  • “The LORD is good to all and compassionate toward all his works.” (Psalm 145:9)
  • “In you, LORD, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your justice rescue and deliver me; listen to me and save me! Be my rock and refuge, my secure stronghold; for you are my rock and fortress.” (Psalm 71:1-3)
  • “The beloved of the LORD shall dwell in safety by him; and the LORD shall cover him all the day long, and he shall dwell between his shoulders.” (Deuteronomy 33:12)
  • “The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe.” (Proverbs 18:10)
  • “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)
  • “Now who is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is right? But even if you do suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear…nor be troubled, but in your hearts reverence Christ as Lord.” (1 Peter 3:13-15a)
  • “Whoever has ears ought to hear.” (Matthew 11:15)

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Prayer for the Day

“O Christ Jesus,
when all is darkness
and we feel our weakness and helplessness,
give us the sense of Your Presence,
Your Love, and Your strength.

“Help us to have perfect trust
in Your protecting Love
and strengthening power,
so that nothing may frighten or worry us,
for living close to You
we shall see Your hand,
Your purpose, Your will through all things.”

Saint Ignatius of Loyola

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