1.✠ A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew
Jesus said to his disciples: “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking,
marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark.They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away.
So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man. Two men will be out in the field; one will be taken, and one will be left. Two women will be grinding at the mill;
one will be taken, and one will be left.
Therefore, stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.”(Mt24:37-44). Taken from today’s Sunday gospel for 1st Sunday of advent year A.
2. Today we begin a new liturgical year, year A. It is also the beginning of the season of advent. Advent is a time of preparation for the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. We know that Jesus was born more than two thousand years ago but the mother Church in her wisdom creates this time to help her children to reflect on how faithful they have been to the Lord and invites them to intense spiritual experience that will help them to purify their heart and be closer to God.
3. The first reading speaks of great future plan that God has for his people in Juda and Jerusalem (Is2:1-5). This great plan of grandeur can only come true if the people walk in the way of the Lord. In the gospel Jesus speaks of the encounter that will take place in a no distant future. He will come to call the righteous. He observed that humanity may miss the great opportunity that his coming offers. He backed his claim by referring to what happened in the past in the day of Noah ( Gen6:5-8:22). God was calling attention to essential things but people were busy with nonessential things. Today humanity is still the same.
4. Jesus maintains that his coming will involve a positive discrimination. Just as God was able to pick Noah out of the sinners that surrounded him so will the son of man do with people at his coming. Two people will be together working, one will be taken and the other is abandoned. This underscores the fact that salvation will not be a group affair. Each person will be dealt with according to his/her behavior.
5. Jesus does not want his followers to be frightened. He merely wants them to know that his coming will be without warning. They must strive to be always ready to meet him. He used an example of a house owner who would rather keep awake than allow a thief to break into his house. Staying awake means being morally vigilant to discern when sinful habits begin to creep into one’s life and having the courage to make a U-turn. The second reading(Rom13:11-14) mentioned some of the habits that one must be awake to so as to be in good state for welcoming the Lord: jealousy, drunkenness and unchastity. These enter the soul slowly but remain if not forced out.
6. If you are receiving an important person to your house you make effort to keep your house and your household in good form, because you would like the person to go with good impression of you. It is the same thing that the God wants you to do in this advent. Keep your heart clean for the Lord. Make this a habit so that the Lord will always have a good impression about you. In this first week of advent make effort to keep your heart free of jealousy, drunkenness and unchastity in its various forms and manifestations: pornography, masturbation, adultery, fornication and vulgar words. Make your heart a fitting home for the Lord. Do not forget that the Lord you are waiting for is already present in the brothers and sisters that you encounter this week. @Vita, 27/11/22.