Fourth Sunday of Advent
However, the excitement continues. In ordinary events it diminishes with the completion of the event. Where as the coming of the Messiah is an ongoing process. Generations passed, centuries passed, people are becoming more and more jubilant in celebrating the coming ofthe Messiah.
The world experienced many great events. None of them are observed with such excitement as the coming of the Messiah. Why? The coming of the Messiah continues. It is an event ever ancient and ever new. He comes to us. His coming is constantly renewed in the life of the people. Nobody can eliminate it. Jesus once said, "I have come to set the earth on fire ... " Luke 12:49. It is that fire of God's love that continues to burn within the hearts of people, and warms homes, communities and nations. May every heart be aflame with that fire of love at this Christmas and ever after.
In the gospel of today, Luke 1:39-45, we see the excitement of Mary. She is a real person, and she exemplifies the Christmas Spirit. We reflect on the visitation of Mary to her cousin. Elizabeth. It all seemed impossible, just too good to be true. Mary had just conceived Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit. To give Mary assurance the angel informed her that Elizabeth, her elderly relative, had also conceived and that she was already in her sixth month. How can it be possible? The angel said, "Nothing is impossible with God."
It is interesting, thought Mary, and she immediately set out to congratulate Elizabeth, to share the joy and to help and offer her service to Elizabeth. Mary forgot herself and the greater miracle working in her. St. Luke in the gospel tells us that Mary set out in haste to Elizabeth's home. Mary would shower Elizabeth with cheerful kindness and unselfish generosity. Even before Christmas existed Mary manifested the Christmas spirit. May the spirit of Christmas inflame your heart and help you to live the spirit of Jesus, pour out the kindness and generosity of Jesus and Mary, and may the mercy of God be upon us.