Advent 2013

First Friday in Advent - December 6th

Is 29: 17-24 / Ps 27: 1, 4, 13-14 / Mt 9: 27-31

How very comforting it is to know that faith in God leads to miracles such as healing the blind. Similarly, it is encouraging to know that God’s mercy and love will lift up the souls of those most in need, as we see in Isaiah. Yet at the same time, this comfort and encouragement comes with apprehension. While recognizing Jesus’ healing actions and finding truth in messages portraying compassion for those in need, how much of this acknowledgment is seen in our every day actions?

In Matthew’s Gospel, we are told that with faith, God can heal. I wonder if we live life the way the cured blind men lived theirs. During this Advent season, I question whether or not our actions portray faith in God. Do we make decisions based on our trust that God will be present in our decisions? Do we constantly stress over petty things? Or maybe worry too much about life's bigger challenges instead of lifting our worries to God? If we acknowledge God’s presence in our lives, we learn that it will result in miraculous experiences, yet we tend to let insignificant matters prevent us from having the faith that the blind men demonstrate in Matthew’s Gospel. We have such a gift in God’s understanding of our human errors and unlimited compassion.

Furthermore, knowing God’s concern and compassion for those in need should only encourage us to keep the poor, oppressed, and marginalized in the forefront of our minds and hearts, however, it’s easy to forget while here at Villanova. We need to remember the gospel messages as well as the Augustinian tradition of service to the poor this Advent and offer up prayers for those who need them most.

Let us take time today to remember that the Lord is our light, our salvation, and the stronghold of our lives. Let us ask God for mercy for the times we don’t always turn to God with blind faith and in thanksgiving for God’s love, acceptance, and compassion for all people.

Sarah Engle
Formerly Campus Ministry