God’s incarnation makes sacred our very decisions and even the process of discernment. Every decision we make becomes an incarnation, a little Christmas through which God enters the world.
What exactly does it mean to rejoice in the Lord?
People had to discern John the Baptist’s message. Was he the messiah? What were the signs they saw? Discernment includes many signs, consolation and desolation, and movements from the spirits that prepare the way to a choice.
Advent is a time to embrace an inner longing that in our wisest moments we know nothing this side of eternity can fulfill.
God illumines a light into the world through the Annunication. Mary’s yes comes in a place of freedom, hope, and not clinging. Ignatius gives us several exercises for making decisions with this kind of freedom.
Incarnation occurs all the time, even in our decisions. We are in a whirl of confusion and feel like we’re in darkness. Advent is a time of sitting with those raw feelings and emotions because discernment begins with observation.
Perhaps it’s time to re-form our understanding of salvation – and our image of God.
As 21st century Christians we look through the lens of history having already happened. We approach Advent in a way that already knows the next chapter of the story. There’s a deeper story that is ours, too.
Pray with this Sunday’s gospel reading using your imagination.