BY: Fr. Karabari Paul

‘Therefore you also must be ready; for the Son of man is coming at an hour you do not expect.’

Today we begin our Advent journey which comprises four Sundays. Advent is a period of spiritual preparation for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. This periodic spiritual exercise has different forms. Firstly, it recalls the actual coming of Jesus more than two thousand years ago. It also points to the daily coming which could either be the end of the life of an individual, or encounter in blessings. And finally, His coming at the end of time. In whatever form it assumes, preparation; being ready is key.

Preparation is one of the regular activities of the human beings. We prepare for work, exams, interviews and in expectation of visitors, we clean our rooms, houses, offices, towns and cities. We put on nice clothes and some women fix hair, nails and other things. Sometimes, decoration is done and the scene for reception is beautified. In all, we do not want to be taken unprepared. However, we never put in same efforts to prepare ourselves for divine visitations. Rather, the days ahead will be spent in shopping, parties and material related things for Christmas and New Year celebrations. We are more interested in bonuses, gifts, dresses and other things. Purple is used this period to remind us of the need to develop a penitential attitude that wears hope.

Isaiah’s prophecy in the the First Reading (Isaiah 2:1-5) calls on the people to look to Mount Zion and the temple as symbols of their salvation. He paints a vivid picture of God’s realm which will come if we learn to walk in God’s way. It is a world where relationships between people have been restored and made whole. No one will be hungry or at war. All the weapons will be turned into tools for food production. You can imagine a Nigeria without military budgets, Boko Haram, banditry and kidnappings. But walking in the light of the Lord as used in this passage is what guarantees that peaceful society that the people long for. It is to avoid sins.


The one who “walks in the light of God” is the spiritual believer who through repentance and amendment of life leaves nothing in his spiritual condition that would hinder the appearance of the Lord, the apprehension of the coming of the Lord, or participation in the Messianic Age of the Lord.

In the Gospel (Matthew 24:37-44), the coming of Christ is compared to the days of Noah. When Noah built the ark, he must have trusted what God had told him, because when he started there was no sign of rain. In fact, Noah looked foolish building an ark in the middle of the desert with no sign of rain. Other people were absorbed in the things and events of life. But he who accepts the ‘foolishness in God’s commands’ will gain His divine wisdom and escape the calamity of those who think themselves wise in the world.

When God visits, He looks forward to a prepared heart, a prepared people, a prepared Church, a prepared family and a prepared humanity.
When God was to visit the Children of Israel in Exodus 19:10-15, He commanded them to sanctify themselves in preparation for His visit. When God visits, He does not want to behold sin; He abhors sin. The disciples of Jesus Christ also prepared themselves for God’s visitation which culminated in the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost.

The coming of Christ will comfort those prepared. The advice of St Paul is important; “You know what hour it is, how it is full time now for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed; the night is far gone, the day is at hand. Let us then cast off the works of darkness and put on the armour of light; let us conduct ourselves becomingly as in the day, not in revelling and drunkenness, not in debauchery and licentiousness, not in quarrelling and jealousy.”
The state of our heart is the primary determinant for Lord’s Coming; our hearts must be right with God. We must sanctify our hearts; getting rid of every sin and filth in our lives. Hebrews 10:22, Exodus 19:10-15. GOD IS STILL ON THE THRONE. May God have mercy on us, heal our world and land, bless and protect us all through Christ Our Lord Amen. Good morning


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