"It is in the child Jesus that we see most clearly the defenselessness of God's love. God comes without weapons, because he does not want to conquer from the outside but to win us over from within and to transform us from within. If anything can conquer the arrogance, the violence, and the greed of man, it is the utter vulnerability of a child . . . ." Pope Benedict XVI
Scripture text: (IS 9:1-6)
The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom
a light has shone.
You have brought them abundant joy
and great rejoicing,
as they rejoice before you as at the harvest,
as people make merry when dividing spoils.
For the yoke that burdened them,
the pole on their shoulder,
and the rod of their taskmaster
you have smashed, as on the day of Midian.
For every boot that tramped in battle,
every cloak rolled in blood,
will be burned as fuel for flames.
For a child is born to us, a son is given us;
upon his shoulder dominion rests.
They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero,
Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.
His dominion is vast
and forever peaceful,
from David’s throne, and over his kingdom,
which he confirms and sustains
by judgment and justice,
both now and forever.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this!
It is so easy for our hearts to become hardened and thereby blind our eyes to the surprise of God. Christ is often encountered in such unexpected places and unexpected ways: in bread, in the poor, in those in need, in self-sacrifice, in forgiveness, in a baby.
We become blinded and fail to see God in the “little things” when our hearts are calloused by sin, and with the root of all sin, the sin of sins, pride.
To see the Lord requires repentance, a change in heart, a turning away from all that is false, a shedding of the scales of sin which blind us, a clearing out of all that clouds the vision of the Prophet Isaiah noted above, a shrugging off of all the burdens that hamper us from climbing the mountain of the Lord.
Trust in the meekness of His Mercy, a Mercy which is so abundant as to be infinite, unstoppable, unconquerable - if you let it.
Let us prepare, then, our hearts to receive the Lord through the Sacrament of Confession. Let us cleanse ourselves from all those faults that might otherwise prevent us from seeing him and welcoming him.