The first reading on Sunday, the 4th Sunday of Advent, spoke of Bethlehem as source for the leadership that would reunite the children of God. Micah speaks of Israel re-united, Isaiah of the human family.
In our days for all that we are preparing to celebrate the birth of that leader some 2000 years ago, the human family is proving might resistant to being reunited, re-formed, reconciled. Again and again its various members show themselves to be at odds with each other, and traduce the better values of revealed religion (and philosophical/cultural humanism at its best).
We need to grow and change. The prophesy still stands: God waits for our response.
The Lord says this:
But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
the least of the clans of Judah,
out of you will be born for me
the one who is to rule over Israel;
his origin goes back to the distant past,
to the days of old.
The Lord is therefore going to abandon them
till the time when she who is to give birth gives birth.
Then the remnant of his brothers will come back
to the sons of Israel.
He will stand and feed his flock
with the power of the Lord,
with the majesty of the name of his God.
They will live secure, for from then on he will extend his power
to the ends of the land.
He himself will be peace.
- What reconciliation is needed in your self and your family and friends? How might you work for it, as a Christmas gift to your circle?
- What reconciliation is needed in your broader community? How might you work for it, as a Christmas gift to society?
- What reconciliation is needed in the Church? How might you play your part in order that all might better respond to Jesus’ call that we might be one?
The Wall. Israel. (c) 2007, Allen Morris.