An Intimate God (small Advent reflection)

Today is the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary.  When God worked within history to bring about our salvation.  As I was praying last night (on the vigil) I thought back to a conversation I had recently.

A few months ago I was talking with an acquaintance about my faith.  I was surprised to hear that though he believed an entity created the universe this entity was no longer actively engaged with it.  How could this entity (he thought); to be engaged would damage what was created – and besides it was too ‘dirty’ (his words) for this entity to deal with. He actually used a Science Fiction idea – he said for the entity to be in contact with the created universe would be like matter – antimatter interaction!! My first thought was wow – Gnosticism never seems to go out of style. We then went on to discuss how I believed in a personal, interacting loving God who was in fact within this creation – no minds were changed that day.

However, the conversation got me reflecting on God’s continuing interaction with His creation; how it is all around us.  These reflective points won’t convince the unbeliever but I offer them to the believer for your own Advent reflection.

  • The very fact that the universe works that way it does shows His hand. ‘Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made.[1]
  • The fact that love exists shows His presence. ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.[2]
  • The completeness we feel when we become one with God in loving obedience shows us His presence is vital. ‘Thou awakest us to delight in Thy praise; for Thou madest us for Thyself, and our heart is restless, until it repose in Thee.[3]
  • Jesus Christ coming to us and revealing His Father and His concern and love brought ‘the great and total other’ being among us. And not just to sit as an aloof powerful and fearful king but to truly be in solidarity with us. ‘God made himself small so that we could understand him, welcome him, and love him[4]
  • Christ’s gift of Himself in the Eucharist shows His constant participation within creation.‘…we see how he became small: in the humble appearance of the host, in a small piece of bread, he gives us himself.[5]

My brothers and sisters, as we continue on in our Advent journey let’s always remember that God is always with us, working for our own success in His plan for us.  May this small reflection help you in yours and it has with mine.

————————————————————————————————

[1] Romans 1:20 (RSV)
[2] Jeremiah 31:3b (RSV)
[3] St. Augustine – Confession Book 1 Paragraph 1
[4] Pope Benedict XVI 12/24/06 Homily for Midnight Mass of the Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord.
[5] ibid

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