Sunday, November 28, 2010

First Sunday in Advent

Readings for November 28, 2010, 1st Sunday of Advent 2010:

1st Sunday of Advent

By Deacon Lawrence N. Kaas
November 28, 2010

In Scouting we are taught to always be prepared, and it is surely a good thing to keep in mind as we go daily about our many activities. Especially being as how we live in central Minnesota. We should be prepared when we go out into the cold, by listening to mom when she says, "bundle up, it's cold outside." Why should she have to remind us? Well at the moment we may be very worm and as we may have the habit of living in the moment we may very well get into trouble when the unexpected moment comes about and we may be freezing. Do you suppose that some of us really live that way? Ask any mother and she will tell you stories.

Years ago when I was on ambulance calls and we would come to some of these car crashes and find in the dead of winter people dressed as if it was summer. Ask Father Statz, he'll tell you it gets cold in Minnesota. Be prepared, for you do not know from one moment to the next what will happen to you. You know how we are so careful because it is icy outside, well the other day I fell in the shop. I was most assuredly not prepared as I should have been.

The central theme for this week end is, "you must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come."

One day, my daughter called and was concerned because some of the people she worked with thought the end of the world was eminent. How could they know that when, even Jesus said He didn't know? Plus the fact that 2nd Peter said that a thousand year is to God as a single day. So we're not 3 days old as Christians yet so don't worry about it." How Merciful is God to give us all this time.

Did you ever Thank God for TIME? Time is what God has given us to keep everything from happening at once. We've all had those moments when it seems as if everything is happening at once. But on the other hand, time is unpredictable. We must be constantly prepared for both the best and worst of times.

In today's lesson Jesus talks to His disciples about the future in time. Throughout Matthew 24, Jesus instructs His disciples concerning two future periods of crises and change, painful changes. Prior to today's Gospel reading Jesus speaks of something that will happen very soon and that is the destruction of the Temple, which was destroyed by the Romans in the year 70. Then Jesus speaks of an ultimate future or of the LAST THINGS, the PAROUSIA, the coming of the Son of Man in Glory! This then marks the end of an earthly age and is the beginning of a heavenly age that for us is yet to come. Jesus warns the disciples of many dangers that will characterize the period before the final end. There will be worldwide chaos and wars between nations. Messianic pretenders will confuse the people, each insisting, "I am the Christ." False prophets will also arise and lead people astray. But the gospel will be proclaimed throughout the world before the end comes. I wonder sometimes if that be the case in our day being that we have EWTN broadcasting all over the world by TV and shortwave radio. Is that part of what Jesus is telling us, happening in our day, in our time. Yet we are told that it is those who endure to the end, that - they will be saved!

Stay alert, be prepared, for you do not know when the Son of Man will come to share with us what eye has not seen, ear, heard or the mind of man conceived what God had prepared for those who Love Him.

For these last few moments I want to take you back to my homily of a month ago: I said then and want to repeat that each of you are to stand before a full length mirror, daily, and pray, "Lord, God, You made me in you image and likeness, to know You, to Love You, to Serve You and to be Happy with you forever in Heaven." I said then and remind you again that that is were you get your self esteem. I don't care how smart you are, how many degrees you have or how many titles, for that matter, you must come to know who you are in Christ Jesus. For if you gain everything that the world has to offer and lose your Faith you have nothing. Why do people worry about the end times or when they are to die, or when they are to stand before Jesus Christ as Judge? Because they have place their self-esteem in the things of the world and not in Christ! I beg you with all that is in me, turn to the Merciful Savor for your self-esteem. Whether you are very old or very young, you may very well, in the future look back at this Advent as the most important of you Life. God Bless You!
'Thank you' to Deacon Kaas, for letting me post his reflection here.
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