Fr Thomas’ Reflection for the 2nd Sunday of Advent

You are a voice in the wilderness

Jack came to see me, all confused.  His family and friends had disappointed him.  His prayer life was far from perfect.  The Sacraments of the Church had not appeared in the horizon of his mind for a long time.  Having listened to him I made some suggestions on how to move forward and where to find some help.  The relief that brought to him was amazing.  It was like a parched wilderness soaking up the little showers it gets occasionally and blooming instantly.  For a moment I felt like John the Baptist, who was the voice that cried out in the desert.

John the Baptist was a messenger, not like a postman who delivers letters, but as someone who gladdens the people who needs lifting up.  There are times you feel like a desert place.  That is when you need a John to announce the good news of hope.  You may not have always noticed; but when you look back you would find a number of occasions when you were helped to find the Spirit of God at work in your life.  Acknowledging such times of listening to ‘the voice in the wilderness’ helps you to turn to the river and find God’s grace that can give you a new life of hope.

If you are blessed enough not to feel like a ‘desert place’, know that you are called to be the ‘voice that cries out in the wilderness’ for other people.  You are called to invite others to a change of heart for a new life.  John baptised people with water as a gesture to mark a change of heart.  Similarly, you may be able to recall some gestures that marked some change of heart.  In this time of waiting for Christmas, see whether you can identify some of those gestures in your own life.

John the Baptist acknowledged that Jesus, who comes after him is greater than him.  Similarly, the first step in making your life the ‘voice of a prophet’ is the humility in which you acknowledge Jesus as your saviour.  Try recollecting the acts of humility in your life, freely acknowledging the place of God and others in your spiritual renewal.  Even with all your limitations, you are called to be a voice in the wilderness.