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Saturday, December 19, 2020

Reflection 2020-12-20 Fourth Sunday of Advent

2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-12, 14, 16; Psalm 89; Luke 1:26-38
The Readings today show that God is the One who does great things for us. In the First Reading, David wanted to build a house for God. But the prophet Nathan at first agreed and later came to David and said, Thus says the Lord: Are you the one to build me a house to live in? I took you from the pasture from following the sheep to be a prince over my people Israel; and I have been with you wherever you went, and have cut off all your enemies from before you; and I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth… Moreover the Lord declares to you, David, that the Lord will make you a house. God is God and he does not need anything from us. In fact, God enumerated the things he has done to David, to show David that God is the One who gives and not us to him.
But there is something God wants from us: our life. He wants us to surrender our lives to him, not because he needs it, nor because he is insecure. But he wants us to do this so he can give us fully what he wants us to have. God told David he does not need a house. In fact, God himself will build David a house, and God will establish the kingdom of David’s son. God is love therefore, it is his nature to give, because love gives of one’s self.
If God gives himself, then we too should give of ourselves. David did not tell God not to do what he has promised. Instead, David praised God, in the verses after our First Reading. David received God’s promises in humility and gratitude. This is what God wants us to do: to receive what he gives us in gratitude.
Mary shows this in the Gospel today. The Angel told Mary that she was to bear a son who will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end. Mary asked how this can be but once the Angel explained it to her, she readily submitted by saying: Here am I, the servant of the Lord, let it be done to me according to your Word. Mary received what God gives her and surrendered herself totally to God.
When we surrender ourselves to God, St Paul tells us in the Second Reading, God can strengthen you according to my Gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ … according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith. We can only obey God when we surrender ourselves to God. Even here, God strengthens us to do this. God wants us to obey him because this is the only way to eternal life, to receive what God wants to give us.
As we see in David, God wants to give him him a kingdom. David accepted it with gratitude. God wants to give Mary a Son, and Mary received him in humility and surrender. God wants to give us a life of power, of joy, of peace and union with him. The only way to receive this is in gratitude, humility and total surrender.
This Christmas, God wants to give his Son Jesus, so that in the midst of this pandemic, we can have peace and joy and power to live in obedience and gratitude before him.
Lord, thank you for what you have planned for me, what you want to give me. I receive it Lord. Come to my life because I surrender it to you. Look at me, your servant. Let it be done to me according to your Word.

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