Intention: We pray for a faith-filled and transforming Christmastime for our world, one that fills it with peace, justice, and good will toward all.
Today’s Gospel | Luke 1:39-45
Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste to a town of Judah, where she entered the house of Zechariah and greeted Elizabeth. When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the infant leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth, filled with the Holy Spirit, cried out in a loud voice and said, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For at the moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy. Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.”
Reflection for the Fourth Wednesday of Advent
The author Craig D. Lounsbrough wrote, “I have both the violent turbulence of the storm and the quiet promises of God in the storm. And what I must work to remember is that something is not necessarily stronger simply because it’s louder.” The people of Jesus’ time lived in a world that had overwhelmed them with its brutal injustice, and their hope was for a savior who would meet and crush their tormentors without mercy. Instead, they were visited by a different kind of power, one that met domination with humility and cruelty with forgiveness. What had arrived was the revolution of radical love. Some would understand the moment and some would not. Today, many still view revolution as a shift of power rather than a change of heart. And so, they continue to wait for something that has already happened. As Elizabeth said to Mary, the Lord’s word to us is fulfilled. We have been released from the captivity of our oppressor – our own sinfulness. The cacophony we have caused is no match for the still and steady presence of God. We are free to face with confidence any tempest and to calm its waves through lives of faith and hope. But first we must say yes. The time of Advent is a time for us to accept God’s gift of quiet in the storm.
Eternal Father, as the days draw closer to the one when we remember the birth of your Son, help us to open our ears and hearts to the sound of his approach. Teach us to prepare a place in our lives in which we can greet him and embrace his presence. May we be filled with gratitude that your promise has been kept and that we have been shown our salvation and that of our world. We ask this of you who lives and reigns with your Son and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen.”