2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16; Ps 89:2-5, 27, 29; Romans 16:25-27; Luke 1:26-38
The reading from 2 Samuel draws a thousand year line from King David. Yet most of his descendants were disobedient to the covenants due to our human weakness and fallen human nature. God saved us according to his ancient covenants announced by the ancient prophets through his Son. Mary and Joseph were of the lineage of King David. Mary, by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit, gave human nature to God’s holy Word made flesh, Jesus Christ, the Messiah.
He did save the human race from its sins of disobedience. He continues to do that if we ask him. The new direction of humanity was covenanted by Jesus almost 2,000 years ago with his death and resurrection. He realigned humanity with God’s plan. He still takes away our sins and directs us to do God’s will each day in our lives. This is an ongoing process.
Will we cooperate with it? We are not free from our sins. Mary was freed by the obedience of Christ to his Father. She didn’t understand all that God wanted of her but she listened to and followed the direction of the Holy Spirit in her life. We too have a vital work of God to do here on earth. We need his power. Will we accept the call? It is our choice. The fruit of our "yes" or "no" will ultimately put us in heaven or hell. We make that choice. I want to run to Jesus and follow him and the daily direction of his Holy Spirit. There is no other good option.
Look at how the Holy Spirit orchestrated the people and events around the birth of Jesus. It is truly amazing and much before the Pentecost event. Reading Blessed Ann Catherine’s "Life of Jesus Christ and Biblical Revelation," Vol 1, fills in a great amount to details not recorded in our scriptures.
I celebrated Mass this morning for our community here. I took bread and wine in my hands. I said, in English, what Jesus said at the Last Supper. And by the power of the Holy Spirit and my ordination, the Holy Spirit changed them into the real presence of Jesus Christ in my hands, our "daily bread." Is that amazing? Is it a daily miracle for us? Jesus is "born again," each day for us all over the world in his ancient Churches, which are the oldest ones in apostolic succession. Not in the over 33,000 different split denominations. "We need to get under the spout where the glory comes out," as one of our current prophets, Fr. Michael Scanlan, used to say. Amen!
Let us take Mary as our model of saying, "yes" to all that God wants to do in and through us each day. Amen! If you haven’t been to confession, get into the Jesus "washing machine" or "shower" and get your sins washed away, before Christmas. Then go receive the greatest miracle we have each day, the Body and Blood of the King of kings and the Lord of all lords.
Holy Spirit, please bring us to Jesus as you did those first shepherds and kings from the East. We want to bow down and worship you. Have a safe and awesome Christmas receiving our greatest gift, Jesus himself.
I wish all of you and your families a very Blessed Christmas. I shall be remembering you all in my Masses and prayers during this Holy Season. Glory to God in the highest!
+Fr. Bob Hilz
(© 2014 Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR)