Third Sunday of Advent
December 14/15, 2019
Good news, Christian stewards, we are gaining ground on our Advent mountain climb, and it is time to take a moment to rejoice in the Good News that our Savior will come again in triumph one day. Today’s readings on this Gaudete (“Rejoice”) Sunday fill us with reminders of God’s final victory over suffering and injustice, and encouragement to remain steadfast in our mission to live as faith-filled disciples.
Such a day almost seems too good to be true, especially when we look around at the dire circumstances we face in our world at present. But by faith, we know this day is coming. Lest we grow weary as we await the glorious day of Christ’s return, St. James, in our second reading, offers wise counsel. “Be patient, brothers, and sisters until the coming of the Lord… Make your hearts firm… Do not complain, brothers and sisters, about one another, that you may not be judged.”
This is excellent advice for us Christian stewards as we face the challenges of everyday life in our broken world, especially in the hectic days that precede Christmas when stress can make us and those around us less than our best selves. St. James reminds us that we can choose our response to both the great strains and the minor annoyances of life.
In other words, we can be good stewards of our attitude, “making our hearts firm” by practicing patience with others and refusing to give in to the temptation to complain.
We can choose to see and rejoice in God’s presence with us, no matter the circumstances surrounding us.