3rd Sunday of Advent: What’s your message?

Goodman 11-06-11 SVP A Christmas Carol

Study: Who are the messengers in my life?  Who are the people who have alerted me to blessings and burdens in my life?

Pray: Ask the Lord for the openness to hear these messengers and take their words to heart.

Serve: Who in my life and I called to offer a message?  What do I need to say…and what do they need to hear?

Mass Readings – 3rd Sunday of Advent

A Christmas Carol

Part III: The Spirits of Christmas

The Spirits of Christmas play a crucial role in Scrooge’s conversion.  Their task is to show images of Christmas throughout time, revealing how the holiday is filled with blessings.  In the images they reveal Scrooge learns the error of his ways, as feelings of guilt, remorse, anger, and sadness wash over him as he watches the effects of his life choices.

It is important to note that the three Spirits of Christmas are messengers.  They are the heralds who reveal to Scrooge the meaning of Christmas.  Yet they are not the holiday itself.  Their presence in the story points to the power of our choices – where our words and actions over time make tremendous effects upon our life.  As Scrooge discovers how his life might have been, he begins to yearn for a better and happier one.

In the Gospel this week we discover another messenger.  John the Baptist arrives, baptizing people and proclaiming God’s wonderful deeds.  People flock around him, inspired by his words and longing for hope.

As the crowds come to John they ask him, “What should we do?” as they pursue their lives.  To each John answers with justice and fairness.  He speaks with power and might, filling the people with expectation.

Many begin to wonder if he is the Christ.  John answers immediately: NO!  There is one coming who is mightier.  John is merely the messenger, pointing the way to Jesus.

Like the crowds, we may often find ourselves looking for those who bring hope.  We may discover in life an unhappiness, a dissatisfaction with ourselves and the choices we have made.  We look to many remedies, yet we know in our hearts that our longing will only be satisfied by God alone.

Perhaps their are people in our lives that have a message for us to hear; may we be open to their words and take them to heart – trusting that their insights can help us on the journey of life.

Perhaps their are people in our lives that we are called to offer a message; may we have the courage to speak up – offering and directing others to insights that can help them embrace the power and beauty of life.

During these last few days of Advent, may we recognize in our lives the messengers sent by God to announce the Good News of Christ.  As we prepare our hearts for the Lord’s coming, we have the opportunity to look within and discern the path we have taken through life.  We can ask “What should we do?” as the challenges of life appear.  May we trust that the Lord will make His will known to us, inviting us to follow with full and open hearts.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives

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Note: This post was first published on December 8, 2014.

About Fr. Andrew Ricci

A Catholic priest since 1997, Fr. Andrew Ricci is currently the rector of the Cathedral of Christ the King in Superior, WI. His website "Three Great Things" can be found at studyprayserve.com and his podcasts can be found under "Catholic Inspiration" in the iTunes store. View all posts by Fr. Andrew Ricci

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