by: Fr. Ren Ligeralde, CJM
The First Sunday of Advent (C) opens the Liturgical year with readings that focuses on God’s way. In fact, Psalm 25 is a good choice as a response to the first reading. This psalm talks about God’s new covenant which is also the focus of the first reading. The writer of the Book of Jeremiah connects Jeremiah’s words pertaining to the new covenant. He focused on God’s promise to David (2Sam 7:16). With regard to the second reading and the Gospel, Psalm 25 is related to these two readings. They all stress on “the way of God”.
Paul in one hand, reminds the Thessalonians about the way of God which he taught them: “For you know what instructions we gave you through the Lord Jesus.” While, Luke, on the other hand, talks also about the way one should take while waiting for God’s promise: “Be vigilant at all times and pray…”.
In other words, all the readings are related to one another as we celebrate the advent season, that is, the waiting. Our waiting does not mean that we should just sit and relax but it entails “God’s way.” We anticipate and we participate. Even in difficult times, we are reminded by the psalmist to trust God and follow God’s way. We are invited by Paul to be vigilant and to pray always. Psalm 25 is an example or a model of an excellent prayer. The psalmist lives his/her life, that is, God’s way, even if, oftentimes, it is difficult to appreciate or understand life. It is difficult to appreciate because of various life-style that the world is offering. The psalmist mentions mercy, steadfast love, faithfulness, graciousness and forgiveness. These are all attributes of God’s way. These are all good news. Because of these good news, now we too could join the psalmist in offering to God our soul: “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.”
The invitation for us is to live a meaningful life, that is, a life like that of the ways of God – doing what is good, right and just; mindful of God’s mercy, steadfast love, forgiveness and faithfulness; and, communicating with God at all times through prayer and studying the Scripture.