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Saturday, December 8, 2018

Advent 2 -

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John the Baptist - Advent/Lent - preparation.  In Christ, the world is changing.

1 Cor 7:31 Those who use the world as not abusing it (not using it to the full), for the world in its present form is passing away.

The current order of things is not stable.

When I was a kid my friends and I would try all kinds of creative and mildly dangerous things, usually involving trampolines or bike ramps.  Using the best engineering a twelve or thirteen-year-old can conjure up, we were sure that the plan was always fool-proof.  But based off the scars and blood that often ensued, we must have had some serious mistakes in our designs.  And yet, we never noticed it: the trampoline looked solid.  After all, it was propped up on bricks and everything: what can go wrong?  Many things, my friends, can go wrong. and many things did.

Our day and age is not very different from the time of Christ in a lot of ways, but one of them is this: we often don't notice how fragile and artificial things really are.  We take for granted, just like myself as a reckless daredevil, that the apparently stable things in our world are not going anywhere, particularly the powers that be. 

Dorothy Day’s biography of Therese spoke in the introduction about how Therese showed us a little way for us who feel like our little things can’t change the world.  When faced versus "system" we may be temped to lose hope.

We see a huge quote-unquote "system" out there that broods over our life and the lives of everyone and controls the way things are, much like Luke accounts today in chapter three of his Gospel.  Luke is setting his audience up to consider the "powers that be," the "system" that controls everything: Tiberias Caesar, Pontius Pilate, Herod and the other tetrarchs, and the high priests (peculiarly two) Annas and Caiaphas.  Then he turns it upside down once again: The Word of God comes to John in the desert.  John is the forerunner who is going to start the process of turning things upside down.  In Jesus, the "system" is broken and the "powers that be" are made powerless.

The things we often hang our hat on, brothers and sisters, are not so stable as we think they are, unless it be the Lord alone that we rely on.  Everything else is idolatry and one time or another it will fail us like my poor trampoline on bricks.
Let us learn from John the Baptist and Mary and Therese to rely only on the Lord, for then God can use us for something great.

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