Are We Even Aware?

Are We Even Aware?

Here we are in the second week of the Advent season. As the responsorial psalm for today says, “The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy.”

What great things is the Lord doing for us? Do we stop and reflect upon what the Lord is doing for us right now? Are we even aware?

God is using us each and every day as His instrument of salvation. In many ways we are like John the Baptizer who was a herald in the desert. Sometimes when we proclaim the Good News, people hear and respond. Other times, people ignore us and may even malign or mistreat us. Yet, like the Baptizer, we soldier on.

The second reading reminds us that the good work that God has begun in us will be carried through to completion. In other words, God is not done with us yet. He continually molds and shapes us into the people He wants us to be right up until the moment of our death. And even in death, we are still God’s instrument. We only have to look to the model of the saints and those men and women who have gone before us to know that we can be inspired and motivated by their good deeds.

In the midst of the hustle and bustle of the holidays, it is imperative that we take some time for relaxation and meditation. What is truly important in our lives? Family, friends, nature, creation, music, art, and sports may come to mind. I recently saw an inspirational video entitled “What if Money Didn’t Matter?” (You can Google it.) The basic premise of the video is what would you do with your life if money (or the pursuit of money) was not in the equation? It really makes one stop and think. In other words, what is your real motivation for living? Wherein lie your passions? What drives you? What makes you tick?

Having a passion to pursue often gives people a reason to live. It gets people out of the doldrums and decreases their depression or anxiety. I like to tell people that the reason I play the piccolo is because it is much cheaper than psychotherapy. Music for me decreases my anxiety. I allow my anger and frustration to exit my body through the movement of my fingers and the intensity of my breath as I play the notes. When I am melancholy the music I choose to play exudes the emotion I’m feeling. I know that for other people, sports or knitting or gaming may do the same kind of things.

May this Advent be a time of anticipation, but also a time of preparation and re-evaluation of our priorities. What are our passions and dreams? Will they truly lead us to happiness? How do they help us to prepare the way of the Lord?

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Written by
Msgr John Kasza