HOMILY: 2ND SUNDAY OF ADVENT [YEAR B]
THEME: ROAD WORKERS
BY: Fr. Johnbosco Obika
1st: Is 40:1-5, 9-11
2nd: 2 Pt 3:8-14
Gospel: Mk 1:1-8
The readings of today together call on us all to be road workers, constantly preparing a way for the Lord. Those of us living in the southeastern Nigeria know the daily nightmare bad roads have caused us. Bad roads stunt development, cause setbacks, scare investors, keep people landlocked in their little environment. Those who have good roads enjoy direct access to the outside world. There is inflow and outflow of visitors who bring investment, education and civilization. A lot of good things come with good roads.
In today’s first reading the prophet Isaiah highlights the importance of good roads and interprets it in the light of the spiritual experience of his people. He brings a message of consolation to them announcing the end of their sufferings at the coming of the Messiah. But the crooked way must be made straight, hills must be filled and mountains made low for the Messiah to enter and his glory revealed.
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St. Peter in his second letter (the text of our second reading today) admonishes us to be living in holiness and righteousness as the ways of straightening the road within us. Since this present age will dissolve, may we be found spotless and unblemished as the Lord comes.
John the Baptist did not hesitate to call on the Jews to prepare a way for the Lord and make his road straight. John, set an example and prepared a way for Jesus by calling people for repentance and baptizing them as a sign of repentance. Advent basically is a time for repentance because only repentant hearts shall receive the grace and gifts of the coming of Jesus Christ (Christmas). The signs of true repentance this Christmas must be seen in low crime rate, fall of price of commodities in the market, less wickedness, less materialism, more giving, more chastity etc.
Jesus' coming is for everyone but those who can receive him are only those whose hearts are not landlocked. As bad roads block good things from outside world so does a sinful soul blocks access to the grace and salvation that Jesus brings. When Jesus came in history many did not recognize him. Now he comes in mystery (in the word and sacraments) many still are yet to let him in. When he comes in glory would our hearts be ready receive him?
Let us scrape the rock of hatred, fill the potholes of prejudice, cut down the trees of pride, demolish the bumps of the flesh and the king of glory will have access to our hearts and save us. Be a road worker, always making a way for the Lord. HAPPY SUNDAY
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