Thursday of the First Week of Advent

Today’s readings

One of the most difficult sins is to think we don’t need God: that’s the sin of pride. It’s a difficult sin because when we shut God out of the picture, we cut off any possibility of reconciliation. This kind of thing is what Isaiah is warning against in today’s first reading. Israel, and we, have to trust in God if we want anything good to happen in our lives. The problem can be that we want God to come to our rescue when things go awry, as they always do when we depend only on ourselves. But if things are going well, we sometimes feel like we can do without God’s direction, thanks anyway.

Advent is a season for us to examine our lives and see if we might have thought ourselves to be lofty recently. How much do we depend on God? Do we rely on his help day after day? Do we consider his will in our daily plans? Are we open to the movement of his Spirit? If not, we might find ourselves tumbling and falling. But if we choose to be aware of God and our need for him, nothing will ever make us stumble. As the Psalmist sings today:

It is better to take refuge in the LORD
than to trust in man.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD
than to trust in princes.

And so we forge onward in Advent, anticipating the coming of Christ, building our houses on his rock-solid foundation. He wants to come to the earth and into our hearts. But we’ll miss him if we don’t let him in.

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