Saturday, December 20, 2008


4th Sunday of Advent

December 21, 2008
4th Sunday of Advent - B

2 SAMUEL 7:1-5, 8-12, 14, 16
When King David was settled in his palace, and the LORD had given him
rest from his enemies on every side, he said to Nathan the prophet,
"Here I am living in a house of cedar, while the ark of God dwells in
a tent!" Nathan answered the king, "Go, do whatever you have in mind,
for the LORD is with you." But that night the LORD spoke to Nathan and
said: "Go, tell my servant David, 'Thus says the LORD: Should you
build me a house to dwell in?' "It was I who took you from the pasture
and from the care of the flock to be commander of my people Israel. I
have been with you wherever you went, and I have destroyed all your
enemies before you. And I will make you famous like the great ones of
the earth. I will fix a place for my people Israel; I will plant them
so that they may dwell in their place without further disturbance.
Neither shall the wicked continue to afflict them as they did of old,
since the time I first appointed judges over my people Israel. I will
give you rest from all your enemies. The LORD also reveals to you that
he will establish a house for you. And when your time comes and you
rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your heir after you, sprung
from your loins, and I will make his kingdom firm. I will be a father
to him, and he shall be a son to me. Your house and your kingdom shall
endure forever before me; your throne shall stand firm forever."

ROMANS 16:25-27
Brothers and sisters: To him who can strengthen you, according to my
gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the
revelation of the mystery kept secret for long ages but now manifested
through the prophetic writings and, according to the command of the
eternal God, made known to all nations to bring about the obedience of
faith, to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ be glory forever and
ever. Amen.

LUKE 1:26-38
The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called
Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of
David, and the virgin's name was Mary. And coming to her, he said,
"Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you." But she was greatly
troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this
might be. Then the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you
have found favor with God. "Behold, you will conceive in your womb and
bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and will be
called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne
of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever,
and of his kingdom there will be no end." But Mary said to the angel,
"How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?" And the angel
said to her in reply, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the
power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be
born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your
relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the
sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be
impossible for God." Mary said, "Behold, I am the handmaid of the
Lord. May it be done to me according to your word." Then the angel
departed from her.

We see in the Gospel our Blessed Mother put ting her total trust in
God. She offered her life and future to God. She puts her life in
God's hand. In the process she became an instrument of God for God to
become a human person. With Mary's response, God became one of us.
'And they shall call him Emmanuel-God with us.'

Our Blessed Mother allowed herself to be dependent on God, not on
something or someone but she put her total reliance on God. She
allowed God to dominate her life. She was not totally clear of what
the future would bring. All she knew was this was God's word spoken
through the angel Gabriel and she was willing to allow God to order
her life according to God's will. She had the spiritual freedom to
respond to God's call. She allowed herself to be available for God. To
be totally available for God is to center one's life on God. For her,
God was not only an important par t of her life; not only the most
important part of her life but for her, God was everything.

When God is everything for a person, nothing is impossible with God.
As we see in the Gospel of Luke: the Virgin is with child and God
becoming man and the sterile gets pregnant. Moreover, salvation is
offered to all.

"Let it be done to me as you say." With these words, Mary shows her
total trust, dependence, generosity and availability by put ting
herself in God's hands. In doing so, she becomes a model disciple for
all of us.

The Canadian spiritual writer Ronald Rolheiser wrote about Mother
Teresa in the opening chapter of his book "The Holy Longing: The
Search for A Christian Spirituality." Rolheiser claims that spiritual
life is about how we manage our deepest desires, our deepest longings.
He gives an example of Mother Teresa as an erotic person. She was
erotic because she was a dynamo of energy. She may have looked frail
and meek, but she was a human bulldozer, an erotically driven woman.
She was however, a very disciplined woman, dedicated to God and the
poor. She willed the one thing — God and the poor. This formed her
what she was. This shaped her life and every choice she made in the
course of serving God and the poor.

Our Blessed Mother and Mother Teresa willed the one thing: God. They
put God at the center of their lives. They put their life giving
energy at the service of this end. As we move towards the last week of
Advent, we are given an opportunity to reflect on who is really the
center of our lives.

Are we dependent on someone or something other than God? Do we trust
enough to put our lives in God's hands?

We pray …
… for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
… for the speedy recovery and healing of
- Lisa
- Graham
- Sophia Gonzalez
- Julie Manzon, Charlie Castro, Josephine Ureta
… for the personal intentions of
- Amy
- Pauline
- Mary Jane
… In Thanksgiving for prayers answered: Manzon family, Barayoga
family, Ureta family, Escamilla family, De Castro family, Castro
… for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Marcus Ng
- Birthday: Noelle J. Del Carmen
- In Memoriam (+): Mary Yang
… for world peace and reconciliation.

Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers
and for those who need our prayers the most.

Have a good day!

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