Wednesday of the 3rd Week of Advent
“…happy is the man who does not lose faith in me.”
These past two years have been difficult for some of us. The changes and disruptions to our life caused by the pandemic has been a transformative experience for everybody. Adjusting to a different way of doing things is something which requires us to be patient. The readings of today encourage us to continue with our journey by providing us with words of comfort from the prophet Isaiah.
This section of Isaiah was written during the Exile and was to provide a message of solace to the people of Israel. There was a general sense of sadness and unhappiness amongst the Jews living in Exile and this message was to proclaim to them that God was stronger than the Babylonian gods. There was also an assurance that God would triumph over every matter which the people of Israel were going through. I am very touched by this message because there were times where I felt really down and out due to the sense of helplessness caused by the pandemic. There were many things coming to me simultaneously and it was really challenging to know where to start. These words are indeed words of solace and a reminder to me that God will see us through the major things in our life.
However, I also need to accept that God will respond in his own way and time. Today’s gospel seems to share a message of about a difference in expectations of what the Messiah should be. The works and miracles which Jesus was performing were certainly different from the political leader which some people were expecting of a Messiah. Jesus was showing that his ministry is one of restoration, healing and forgiveness. The world we live in is broken and in need of healing from sin and hurt. It took me a long time to acknowledge that I was a broken person who needed the healing power of Jesus in my life. The pandemic made these hurts glaringly obvious, but it also gave me the courage to acknowledge that I needed to surrender all my hurts to Jesus and pray for healing. That process was a liberating one and made me discover the importance of letting go and let God work through me.
As we journey towards Christmas, let us ask the Christ child to come into our lives and surrender to him all our hurts, and replace them with a peace the world cannot give.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Nicholas Chia)
Prayer: Jesus, I surrender all my hurts to you.
Thanksgiving: We give thanks for all the people who point out how we should live a God-fearing life.