Gospel Reflection Dec 3 – Fr. Black

Sunday, December 3

First Sunday of Advent

Mark 13: 33-37


Jesus said to his disciples:

“Be watchful! Be alert!

You do not know when the time will come.

It is like a man traveling abroad.

He leaves home and places his servants in charge,

each with his own work,

and orders the gatekeeper to be on the watch.

Watch, therefore;

you do not know when the lord of the house is coming,

whether in the evening, or at midnight,

or at cockcrow, or in the morning.

May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping.

What I say to you, I say to all: ‘Watch!’”

Gospel Reflection:

WATCH is the key word in today’s Gospel. As Jesus uses the example of a man traveling, he implies that we should not only watch, but also be prepared. When we go on a trip, we always try to anticipate our needs so that we can pack what we will need. However, Jesus also tells us that we will not know when the Lord of the house is coming. There seems to be an inconsistency here. How can we watch for, and be prepared for something that is unknown? What Jesus is saying to us is that we need to be prepared in a different way. When we travel, we know how many days we will be gone, so we also know how many changes of clothes we will need. We know the climate of our destination, thus allowing us to pack accordingly. When we “pack” spiritually each day, we may not know specifically who we will encounter that day, or the circumstances of the encounter. Regardless we know that if we pack patience, gentleness, love, mercy and the virtues that the Lord has bestowed on us, we will be fully prepared to meet Him.

Father James Black