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Friday, 19 December 2014

Reflection/Homily: Fourth (4th) Sunday of Advent Year B (December 21 2014)

Theme: Saying Yes to the Will of God

Some years ago, during one of my apostolic works in a parish, there was this boy who insulted a senior during the catechism class. I asked the boy to kneel down for insulting an elder and the boy retorted: “Brother, this senior doesn’t deserve respect, even though I am kneeling down in your eyes, in my mind I am still standing up”. The boy proved to me that it was very difficult to bend his will even in a justifiable cause and this goes to confirm what psychologists believe that the human will is the strongest faculty in man to be bent against his desire. There are people who once they make up their minds to do or not to do a particular thing, nothing makes them act otherwise, not even biblical exhortations or counseling. People say that such a person’s will is unchangeable.

In the first reading (2 Sam 7:1-5,8-12,14,16), we see David abandon his will for the will of God. David triumphed over his enemies in battle and when he was settled, he decided to build a temple for God. This will was communicated to the Prophet Nathan who approved it. But God revealed a contrary will to David through the prophet. God’s will for David was not for him to build Him a house but to establish his throne forever. David had to bend his will for God’s will to be done and for His promises to come true in his life.

In the gospel reading (Luke 1:26-38), we see the fulfillment of the promise made to David in the message of the angel to the Virgin Mary. Before this time, Mary’s will was to offer her whole life to God as a virgin but this was against the will of her parents who betrothed her to Joseph. Mary accepted the will of her parents for her only to abandon this will again and accept the will of God for her through the angel Gabriel.

On this last Sunday of advent, we reflect on Mary’s ability to say “no” to her will and to say “yes” to the will of God. Mary’s disposition to accept the will of God is seen in her response to the angel: “I am the handmaid of the Lord let it be done to me according to your will”. Today, we see David’s acceptance of the will of God and Mary’s response to the will of God as an example to follow. Are we ready to forgo our wills to follow the will of God? How prepared are we to listen to God and learn His will for us? Is our faith strong enough like that of David and Mary to believe in God’s will for us? Are we humble enough like them? Mary’s response facilitated God’s salvation for us. Through our cooperation with God’s will, He will be pleased to do marvelous things in and through our lives, as He did in and through the lives of David and Mary. We only need to give Him a chance by learning His will for us through His Word, the Bible especially during this period of advent and Christmas. 

Beloved friends, God’s will for us this season may be to help the poor, to clothe the naked, to assist in Church projects, to forgive our enemies, to restore peace, to avoid sin and to live a holy life. Are you ready to do this and avoid those sinful acts you have willed to perform this season and beyond? Will you do the will of God out of conviction or will you be like the little boy who though doing the act physically has a different mind frame to it? Doing the will of God requires some convictions. Are you really convinced that God’s will is better? May God through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary help us to do His will and witness with joy the presence of Christ among us whose food was only to do the will of the Father who sent him. Happy Sunday. God loves you.

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