Written on: December 6, 2018
This second week of Advent, we bring you a reflection from Sister Diane Bardol
In the Catholic tradition, Advent is a season of waiting. In today’s world of instant everything waiting has become much less tolerable!
When my computer doesn’t respond instantly I’m impatient, annoyed, taking it almost as a personal affront!
When I’m put on hold and have to listen to music that is not my kind, another personal attack!
Mounting incidents of road rage, yet another manifestation of our unwillingness to wait.
I’d say that for most of us waiting has become an enemy; it has lost its meaning and therefore purpose, even though it’s still very much a part of our lives. I’m wondering if the violence we are experiencing every day isn’t a by-product, at least in part, of our inability to appreciate waiting?
Reflecting on the scriptures for the second Sunday of Advent, with an eye to seeing the profound meaning and beauty in waiting, may transform our impatience and intolerance into compassionate nonviolent living.
Take the reading from the Prophet Baruch.
Here we enter the life of an exiled people being called back home. Baruch, unlike some of the other prophets, speaks words of comfort and promises of restoration not divine punishment. After they got over their sense of guilt and abandonment by God, these exiles were able to hear God in the voice of the prophet. Finally the time of exile was coming to fruition. Exile had created space in them and for them to recognize their hunger for the God from whom they had been exiled, the God of their life; it gave them a listening and longing heart. They were led into exile not only by their political enemies, but by their own lower instincts.
It takes time for “lofty mountains to be made low and age-old depths and gorges to be filled to level ground.” And this waiting time was the gift that enabled them to know that God “remembered” them.
Thus hope was born in them and continues to be born in us making all things possible especially living in confidence that “God is leading us . . . with mercy and justice for company”