Fourth Sunday of Advent

Written on: December 12, 2016

Embrace the Mystery of Encounter

  •  A virgin shall conceive and bear a son;
  • You are called to be holy and set apart for the gospel;
  • In a dream Joseph heard, “do not be afraid;”
  • His name shall be Emmanuel, “God is with us.”

God became one of us!

How do we put our arms, our hearts, and our minds around such mystery?

Paradox confronted and continues to confront people in their ordinary lives, not by happenstance or chance,           but through invitation, challenge and finally, a yes!   

So many people of humble means received the grace             to respond to God’s invitation and call                                     as God entered into the daily-ness of their lives.                     Not without struggle do they submit to the designs of God; Not without questions and concerns;                                       but each time it required a leap of faith                                     which propelled them into new never-before-seen deep mystery.

The encounters of God with humanity are as varied as the persons receiving them.  God comes to us in the way that we are most able to receive God.

And then,

“In the stillness of the night,                                        when the world was asleep                                             the all-powerful Word leapt down!”

God embraced humanity—fully and completely.

The gracious in-breaking of God into our human reality     was oh so simple and charming—who can resist a child!

Humanity embraced Divinity through Joseph and Mary’s “yes!”  We embrace Divinity as we hold on to the gifts of Emmanuel:

  • as we embrace the challenges of our day ahead;
  • as we remember God-is-with us;
  • as we understand that God is our strength and courage when we feel unqualified to handle situations that come our way.

Hold on to Jesus.  Look for signs of his presence in your life.  Wrap yourself in God’s protection and most of all REJOICE!


Mary LizSister Mary Elizabeth Looby is a member of the GNSH Leadership team and freely shares her gifts of spiritual direction, and general, wise counsel both inside and outside of the Congregation.


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