Come, let us walk in the light of the Lord!
The word “advent” comes from the Latin word advenire, which means to arrive or to come to. The season of Advent is a season of preparation from the coming or arrival of Jesus. The first two Sundays’ readings are usually focused on the second coming of Christ at the end of time, while the third and fourth Sundays’ readings are focused on the first coming of Christ at Christmas. In our readings today, there is a theme of knowing what is to come and acting in light of that.
In our first reading, the prophet Isaiah speaks of how in the days to come, the Lord will judge the nations, and the prophet invites his listeners to already begin now to walk in the light of what is coming. St. Paul reminds the Christians in Rome that they know what time it is, and that salvation is nearer now than it was when they first became believers. And finally, in the Gospel today Jesus tells a parable about an owner of a house, who if they knew what part of the night the thief was coming, would have stayed awake and not be caught off-guard.
One of the things the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius is popularly known for, is the contemplation for making a choice regarding a state or way of life. Among the advice, and considerations offered by the saint for this purpose, is how we will one day stand before Christ as our judge, talking with Him about the decisions we made. And the saint’s advice is to choose for ourselves as our state or way of life what on the Day of Judgment we feel will give us happiness and joy1 as we speak about it with God, who loves us.
1 Fleming S.J., David L. Draw Me Into Your Friendship: The Spiritual Exercises A Literal Translation & A Contemporary Reading. Saint Louis: Institute of Jesuit Sources, 1996., 144.