Friday, December 4, 2009

Saturday: First Week of Advent - 2009

We know that Advent is a season for waiting, a season in waiting. Yet, I suspect, no matter our ages, there are moments when we catch ourselves saying, "I can't wait until ...." Who has instructed us about how we should learn the waiting game, as some might name it? How difficult it must be for those who are seeking to return to the work force, for those struggling for survival. Surely waiting is painful for them.

Then there are those who say to themselves, "I can't believe God is taking so long to stand beside me. How long do I have to wait to get through these difficult moments?" Although God may seem to be distant and not present to these good folks, we have to have both the faith and trust in God. God has not forgotten those beaten down. He has not forgot to reach us how to get through the waiting period. He has suggestions.

The gospel for this Saturday, Mark 9:35-10:1, 5a, 6-8, contains what Jesus tells his disciples to do in order to make the best of waiting times. He does not suggest spending hours in chapel or church -- as some might expect. He does not discourage that, however. His directions to his disciples are a clue to us. God does not expect us to become couch potatoes in our waiting times. He tells the disciples to get about the work of the kingdom: "Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, drive out demons." Remember the next sentence: "Without cost you have received; without cost your are to give."

In moment of waiting get involved in helping others. The time will fly.