HOMILY FOR THE FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT YEAR B.
HOMILY THEME: THE CALL OF ADVENT
BY: Fr. Benny Tuazon
In the day’s Gospel Jesus tells us to watch for the Master may come anytime. He gave an analogy of a man travelling abroad and left his servants in charge of his assigned work and instructed the watchman to be vigilant. For the Master to come unwelcomed and unrecognized will be a disrespect, and in the context of salvation, it is being unprepared and disregard for God. Thus, we ought to keep watch.
The command to keep watch is not a passive act. It is not like finding a comfortable place where we can seat in waiting and watch for the Lord until He comes. Watching, in this sense, involves some things to do, some things to achieve. Let us find counsel in the first and second readings for this day.
The prophet Isaiah pleads to God to come and rescue His people from their sinfulness. God did not deserve the disobedience and rejection of His love from His people who He had loved and created. It was unfortunate that His people had stopped listening to Him, became unclean, and worse, when good deeds are done, they were like polluted rags. We give to charity so that we can be recognized. We help a person sot hat we will feel good and that person will owe us and, someday, we can demand to be paid back by that person. We do things for our selfish reasons.
The call of Advent is to bring back our authentic goodness. We obey God’s command to pray, make sacrifices, and do acts of charity because we love our neighbor and God. let our good deeds be clean rags and not polluted ones. The Master would be happy finding His servants offering Him clean rags and not polluted ones. God sees what are in our hearts. We cannot decide Him. He will recognize a heart of gold. The second reading is St. Paul’s recognition of the great gifts God had given to the Corinthians in particular, and all of us in general. We were given with everything and found not wanting. God had strengthened us against evil. It is for this reason that we ought to establish a fellowship with Jesu. It means that we must know, love, and serve Him. Expressing our love for Him in words is not enough. We must experience Him and seek to make Him real in our lives and not just an idea or a God somewhere out there. In Spirit, He dwells in us. We should recognize His presence in us.
The call of Advent is also fellowship. The one who is to come is a friend, Lord, and Saviour. If we must fear Him, it must be the fear of not being found worthy when He comes. If we must fear Him, it is in not discovering that we had been unfaithful to Him. If we must fear Him, it is in losing our friendship with Him. Keep watch of the Lord’s coming! Be good and be a faithful friend.