Posted by: livingscripture | December 18, 2016

Fourth Sunday of Advent

 

 WORD of the DAY

 Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord* appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her.  She will bear a son and you are to name him Jesus,* because he will save his people from their sins.”  (Mt 1, 20b-21)

 How shall I live this Word?Joseph dreams 2

The story that God began with Abram has now reached its objective in Jesus Christ.  However, the objective is not the end of the story because it continues, but in a new way.  It is into this newness of love that we are called in an unexpected way and one that perhaps is little understood.  This is how it was for Joseph.

Yes, he was the just man, but his justice was different.  Already in anticipation, he practices what Jesus would later teach: “If your justice is not greater than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven” (Mt. 5: 20).  This is why Joseph, although not understanding the facts and not wishing to repudiate Mary, decides to divorce her in secret.  This decision taken, he remains in a listening attitude, attentive to God’s voice, and thinking about these things, he is able to perceive through a dream the meaning of what was happening in Mary.  In this dream, the angel uses the Bible to clarify Mary’s pregnancy.  It came from the action of the Spirit of God.

God speaks to us as well in the events of our life.  He shows us the ways of His divine justice that go beyond our reasoning and our certainties. He calls us and waits for our free response.  Thus without fear, we assume in our heart the love that generates life because it is in our heart that Jesus will give us the great gift of Salvation.  Let us joyfully await His coming.

Lord, help me to see and to decide in the justice of Your Love. 

 The Voice of Pope Francis

Joseph is the guardian because he knows how to listen to God; he lets himself be guided by His will, and precisely because of this, he is more aware of the persons entrusted to him.  He knows how to read events with realism and attends to what surrounds him.  He knows how to make wise decisions.  In him, we see how to respond to the vocation of God: with availability, with promptness, but we see also what the center of the Christian vocation is: Christ!  We guard Christ in our life in order to care for others, to care for creation! (Homily, 19 March 2013)

 

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