Today’s readings touch on the importance of following God and his word no matter how difficult it may be.
In the first reading from Isaiah, the Lord says through the prophet, “If you would hearken to my commandments, your prosperity would be like a river”. In this verse, God explicitly explains how if one follows his commandments, prosperity will flow from them like a river. However, doing so is often very difficult, and changing oneself to follow these commandants can require a great deal of courage and willingness to be uncomfortable.
Jesus reflects this sentiment in the gospel when he talks about how both He and John were rejected for the message they brought to the people. For John they said, “He is possessed by a demon”, and for Jesus they said, “Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.” Ultimately, these are excuses from the people to justify themselves not listening to the life-altering messages of Jesus and John because changing would have been difficult and uncomfortable to them.
We do many of the same things every day. We make up excuses for why we are not going to help someone or do something Jesus would want us to do because it would challenge us or make us uncomfortable. To prepare our hearts for the coming of Jesus this Advent, I am challenging myself and those reading this to make a change or do something in your life for Jesus that will be difficult and get you out of your comfort zone. As Pope Benedict XVI said, ““The world offers you comfort. But you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness”.
— Manny Hamer, Class of 2022