Posted by: livingscripture | December 3, 2009

First Thursday of Advent

From the Word of the Day

This gate is the Lord’s; the just shall enter it.

                                            Psalm 118

 How should we live this Word

 This verse of the psalm of today’s Liturgy is a response to what is proclaimed in the first reading, ‘Open up the gates to let in a nation that is just, one that keeps faith’ (Isaiah 26: 2).  We see a great crowd thirsting for justice, pushing against the doors of the spiritual Jerusalem, the city founded on the solid rock of the Word, on Christ the Word.

 The Gospel warns us that it too will know the violent thrust of the tempest, the overwhelming power of overflowing rivers.  These realities spare no one.  Rather they are necessary to guarantee the consistency of the building.  In fact in the moment of trial, we witness the flimsiness of the house built on sand, the transitory nature and inconsistency of human pride and self-sufficiency.  On the other hand, we see the stability of the city that God encircled with walls and ramparts because it is founded on the eternal rock.

 The just who keep faith need only cross the threshold with praise and thanksgiving on their lips for all that God has done and will do.  It is a chorus that is not limited by time or space.  Persons of every epoch and place, who are trustfully anchored in God and founded on His Word, are part of this hymn that attests to God’s goodness and fidelity.

 Today as I pause for silent contemplation, I will go to the gates of this holy city, reconfirming my will to keep the faith in the covenant of love that God has made with me from the day of my Baptism.  I will symbolically cross the threshold so that every instant of my life may be a hymn of gratitude and praise.

 I bless You and praise You Lord, because You have opened to me the doors of the holy city through my Baptism.  You have offered me the riches of Your Word as the foundation of my existence so that no tempest may drag me from You, who are my rock and my rampart.

 The voice of St. Bede, Church Father

 When we build a house, the foundation stone is laid first.  So too the Church has her stone, Christ, hidden in the depths of the heart.  Nothing comes before faith and love for Him.

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