It is 10th December 2017. We celebrate the Second Sunday of Advent. The second Sunday of Advent, we light the ‘Candle of Peace/preparation or ‘Candle of Love or the Bethlehem Candle.’ We prepare ourselves more intensely and welcome our God and our Savior. (Luk.3:4-6). The readings are from Isaiah 40:1-5, 9-11; 64:1, 3b-8; the second reading is from 2Peter 3:8-14; and the Gospel from Mark 1:1-8. In the first reading, the prophet presents in the first part the sorrow and pain people went through on account of their unfaithfulness to God while the second part of the reading concentrates on the preparation of the Israelites to return from the exile. The second week of the Advent invites us to prepare personally to return from our sinful wandering and it is indeed home-coming to everyone. God assures peace and love to all who consciously make effort in returning to the Lord. The preparation of making advent wreathes and Christmas trees are the symbols of what must be going inside of us. Our preparation must not be shallow, worldly and pompous leaving Christ Jesus being the peace and love of our lives. It is also a time to prepare ourselves to go for the Confession. It is time to make a highway for our loving God to walk. ““In the desert prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.” (Is.40:3). We need to repent and be converted to meet the Lord. Christmas is meaningless without personal conversion. Our celebrations make sense by emptying our sinful burdens and creating a better space for Jesus in our humble manger. It is long since we went for the Sacrament of penance and reconciliation. The responsorial Psalm prays, “Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.” (Ps. 85:8). St. Peter encourages all to be holy and blameless before God because God will not delay any longer, but God is still patient with us all along. His patience must not be taken as God is condoning our sinful living. “Therefore, beloved, since you await these things, be eager to be found without spot or blemish before God, at peace.” (2 Pet.3:14). In the Gospel, we encounter John the Baptist, the culmination of prophecy that began in Elijah, the voice of the Lord preparing the way of the Lord and pointing Him by his personal message of conversion. Our lives must point out Christ. Our Words need to resound peace and love of Christ. Let us prepare ourselves and mend our ways that made someone to deviate from the way of the Lord. Let us come back to home of our loving and forgiving Father God. Forgiveness is guaranteed in Jesus, who is peace and love. As we read in the entrance antiphon, so we believe, “O people of Sion, behold, the Lord will come to save the nations, and the Lord will make the glory of his voice heard in the joy of your heart.” (Is.30:19,30). May we be at peace with God by confessing our sins.

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