Wednesday, December 23, 2009


our King and Lawgiver,
the Desire of all nations and their Saviour:
Come and save us, O Lord our God.

MASS READINGS: Malachi 3:1-4, 4:5-6; Luke 1:56-66

John the Baptist was chosen by God and became one of his greatest prophets. As a baby he was helpless and needy. As a prophet, he displayed the same humility. Like all the saints, he above all else knew his need for God.

Real prophets are humble. They understand that without God's grace they are nothing. (False prophets are just the opposite!) When asked who he was, John said: "I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness: Make straight the way of the Lord" (Jn 1:23). If we are successfully to beckon our contemporaries to Jesus, we will need the same humility of heart, seeing ourselves as John saw himself - as instruments in the hand of God.

John’s humility has deeply impressed Christians through the ages. Before anyone had heard of Jesus of Nazareth, people were travelling vast distances to see John the Baptist. Yet he always pointed to Jesus and away from himself. “He must increase, I must decrease” (Jn 3:30), was what he said. John actually encouraged his disciples to leave him and follow Jesus.

We, too, as a prophetic people, are called to be poor in spirit. In any case, for the self-sufficient, the proud, those who think they have no need of a Saviour, there will be no REAL Christmas. Only the poor in spirit, those who hunger for God, those who need someone to come on their behalf, will know that Someone. That someone is Jesus, our Emmanuel, our God-with-us.

Let’s examine our hearts to see if we are properly prepared with the right spiritual disposition to receive Jesus this Christmas, the King of kings, who humbled himself and was born in a manger.


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