20 December, Monday — Traces from the Past

Monday of the 4th Week of Advent – 20 December

Isa 7:10-14
Ps 23(24):1-6
Lk 1:26-38

Know this too: your kinswoman Elizabeth has, in her old age, herself conceived a son, and she whom people called barren is now in her sixth month…

I got into the habit of writing a diary when I was 10 years old. Eventually, it evolved into a journal filled with my conversations with God. And then a list of petitions where I ticked off those that were granted, and struck off those that were not granted. Eventually, I joined the crowd of word cloud users, and then I started sketching. Every time I look back, I am in awe of how much God was involved, and how he moved in my life.

Let’s imagine ourselves looking forward, and we see darkness. It is not the darkness of sadness, but it is the darkness of uncertainty, of us not knowing what is ahead. God is a lamp upon our feet, so we only see a few feet ahead. And then we look back, and there we’ll see the path we took with God, glowing amidst the darkness. For me, these journals became those lampposts, showing me where God took me.

In today’s reading, God has already put that lamppost in the past. By having Elizabeth pregnant ahead of Mother Mary, Gabriel was able to give a concrete example of the miracles God can do. I think God is giving us all these events in the past to convince us that He’s got us covered, that he’s in control.

Since it’s the last month of the year, maybe we could ask God to highlight to us the events in our lives which show us how he’s prepared us for this moment, and for the future. For some of us who keep journals, maybe we could find time to read them. For some of us, maybe we can browse through our social media posts. Or maybe we could go back to our calendars and see where God took us.

For some of us who are going through a lot right now, maybe we could hardly find any; but I’m confident that we could at least find a spark, even if it’s small. The darker it is, the more we become sensitive to the tiniest light.

And I think once we are ready, maybe we could imagine ourselves bringing our ‘photo albums’ in front of Baby Jesus. And maybe just spend some time with him, telling him stories of what happened in your past and let him smile…and cry with you.

(Today’s OXYGEN by Stephanie Villa)

Prayer: Dearest Lord, help me see where you have been in my life.

Thanksgiving: Thank you, Lord, for helping me appreciate where you have taken me.

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