It is hard to believe that the first week of Advent is just around the corner. The end of ordinary time always presents a valuable juxtaposition, as the solemnity of Our Lord Jesus, King of the Universe marks the culmination of the liturgical calendar. The new year begins with a preparatory season in which we anticipate the first arrival of God in our midst in His Incarnate Son. Yet, we also carry with us the awareness that Christ as King means his rule is everlasting, and although it has not reached fulfillment, we await that second coming wherein creation will be completely restored. No kingdom on earth can compare.
How can we live this out in our everyday experiences? I think the simplest take away is that we need to pause and adequately reflect on what God is doing. Our work of education requires patience, which just so happens to be the virtue of the month. There are two types of patience: patience in the moment and patience over time. It occurred to me on grandparents' day that the book-ends of life both require patience as well, and so much of our mission is driven by the intersection of personal experiences and generational differences, for children need reliable and credible witnesses in order to truly live for the Kingdom of God. Conversely, adults of all ages need a sense of hope, which is given anew each time life is brought into the world.
As we enter Advent, the intersection of personal experience, generational wisdom, and patient reflection will be on display in the lives and testimonies of so many diverse biblical characters. We will once again re-remember in a sense that the most unifying and attractive quality to these beloved nativity figures is that in spite of adversity and seemingly insurmountable obstacles, the patient hope for the arrival of a truly peaceable kingdom inspired superhuman courage and virtue. In short, the kingdom is both worth the wait, and worthy of tireless work.
Pope Benedict XVI really captures the mysterious workings of providence when he stated that, "The feast of Christ the King is therefore not a feast of those who are subjugated, but a feast of those who know that they are in the hands of the one who writes straight with crooked lines." Let us always remember that God is looking for us, and that our patient endurance of life's struggles can be put into action by seeking Him in return. He simply cannot let us down.
Yours Truly In Christ,