On this First Sunday of Advent we are reminded that we can spend all our time waiting and doing nothing, or we can be about something while we wait. Are we to be just sitting around and expect it to come or are we to make of it as best as we can to do something, so that when we are faced with it we are ready. Yet, what is that it? Is it on this that we will be judged? Is it on this that our very lives depend on?
Our Gospel today speaks of “signs” in the heavens – the sun, the moon and the stars. People will be confused and wandering looking for something, anything that will provide them some comfort, something that they can hold on when everything seems so precarious, so perishable, so petty. So quickly changing.
These are to be the signs of the second coming. They are also the signs that will be use to confuse and conflict us. Think back to the fear and uncertainty when we neared the end of the 20th century. When 1999 was ending and that 2000 will come; we will be at a stand still. So many were afraid that the world would come to an end before the arrival of the 21st century. The computers will just stop working. The world which relies upon technology; will be such a mess. Yet here we are, living and breathing and praising God.
So what is it that we are awaiting? What is to come?
The problem is that we don’t know what or when it will arrive! So, we have these moments to remind ourselves of our need to wait while remembering what has already come to pass.
However, as a person who has some sort of believe, we do look at the birth of the infant Jesus, not as if it were to happen, but because of what it means for us. He came as a child; a child who needs to be cared for, nurtured, fed, bathed, held and loved. As a child needing these things, this is, in fact, our task. While we await, we are to care for one another. Not just to care but to nurture each other to help each other in a way that strengthens our connection and relationship which means something in this world already exist or is yet to come. We are to serve, to be for each other the community we call “Church”. We are the ones who will feed and bathe and clothe and love. We are the ones who will teach, who will build up, who will share what it is to have faith with those who come after us.
It is more then just awaiting again the birth of Christ, it is more then awaiting for what is to come. It is more then what we could imagine. It is to be ready for we will know nothing and be ready for that unexpected moment or hour or day.