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A gift for Jesus
Today we begin the Season of Advent. This year, as we prepare for Christmas, think about how you like to show your fondness for the special people in your life by choosing gifts that will be meaningful to them. And yet, assuming that you can actually find something (or make something) that will be appreciated, does it always make a difference in the long run? How many gifts have you given in the past that became mere dust-collectors? Which ones turned out to be truly valuable with a long-lasting impact?
Since Christmas is the celebration of the birthday of Jesus, let’s remember to give him a gift, too. God deserves more gifts than anyone else, but what do you give to someone who already has everything? Or does he?
What gift can you give to Jesus that will have an eternal impact, a gift that no one else can give him, a gift he doesn’t already have? What have you been withholding from him? What talent or activity or ministry or commitment or change in lifestyle?
This Sunday’s first reading reminds us that God is our Father. The responsorial Psalm asks the Father to help us turn to him. The second reading gives thanks to God for all that he has done for us. So – what gift can you give to God to express your appreciation for what he has given to you?
In the Gospel reading, we’re reminded of the need to prepare – to actually do something that makes a difference – for the coming of Christ. This not only refers to his Second Coming. It’s also about the day when he comes for us as we breathe our last earthly breath. It’s about the way he wants to come to you during this year’s Season of Christmas. And it’s about the way he is coming to you right now, today.
There’s something new that he wants to give you. When he offers it, will he find you doing what’s right (as in the first reading)? Will he find you using your spiritual gifts (as in the second reading)? Will he find you alert and ready to do his bidding (as in the Gospel reading)?
Advent is an opportunity to take notice of the gifts he gives us and for becoming aware of the gifts we can give to him that he doesn’t already have. It should make an eternal difference – for him and for us.
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A beautiful reflection about “gift-giving”.
“The world sometimes censures us for not conforming to certain of its requirements; but it is edified when it discovers that we are influenced by principles of virtue, whilst it justly condemns those who are gained over by its false applause.” (SW: 538) – St. Louise de Marillac – Heavenly Lord, give me the courage
St. Mary’s Catholic Church
812 Duke Street
Greensboro, NC 27401
Monday through Friday
9:30 AM – 2:30 PM