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Friday, December 7, 2007

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St. Ambrose

Isaiah 29:17-24
Psalm 27
Matthew 9:27-31

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"Jesus said to them, 'Are you confident I can do this?' " —Matthew 9:28

When Jesus came at the first Christmas, He came as the Fulfillment of the old covenant, of the law and the prophets (Mt 5:17). During this first week of Advent, the Church shows us how Jesus fulfills the amazing prophecies of Isaiah.

When Jesus came at the first Christmas, many had been waiting their entire lives for the Messiah, but still didn't recognize Him when He came. It was as though they were blind to what God was doing. On one hand, they were waiting for God to fulfill His promises; on the other hand, they weren't confident that God would fulfill His promises anytime soon (see Mt 9:28).

In some areas of our lives, we've also been waiting a long time for God to act. It may be the conversion of a loved one, the overturning of an injustice, or the renewal of your parish. God is always active, but we may be blind to it. Are we losing confidence in God because we don't see any sign of His action in this area? The Lord promises fulfillment, saying, "Out of gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see" what He is doing (Is 29:18).

Advent is a time when we prepare to meet Jesus at His Christmas coming. Jesus came to fulfill all His promises (Mt 5:17). He asks you: "Are you confident I can do this?" (Mt 9:28) "Wait for the Lord with courage" (Ps 27:14) and unwavering faith. Be confident and "ready to greet Him when He comes."

Prayer:  Jesus, Messiah, open my eyes that I may see You this Christmas (2 Kgs 6:17) and have confidence in You.

Promise:  "Those who err in spirit shall acquire understanding." —Is 29:24

Praise:  St. Ambrose was chosen Bishop of Milan while still a catechumen, so confident were the people that God was with him.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 30, 2007

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