If you are like me when preparing for guests and holiday soirees, a lot of time and effort goes into cleaning and decorating. But am I preparing in a way that Jesus wants me to prepare? As a society, are we really preparing in ways that will bring us closer to Him? Are we putting forth any effort into the spiritual cleansing and preparation needed for our souls? Can the Holy Spirit truly dwell inside us when we have not cleared out the cobwebs and dust that our sins leave behind?
The purpose of Advent is to prepare and make way for the Lord. While I do not know what is on the hearts and minds of others, from a personal level I can tell you that I have not prepared. How can I expect The Lord to dwell in my heart when I have not cleaned or made room for Him at the Inn? For me, sin is rampant in so many areas of my life: I am prideful, I am judgmental, and I do not do nearly enough in the area of helping those who have far less than I do...and the list doesn't stop there.
Just like in our homes, we can tidy up by sweeping and wiping down the surface dirt. Surface dirt is easy to see and very recognizable. Or, we can take the time for a deeper clean, a clean that can only take place when we are willing to get down on our hands and knees to examine those baseboards. We need move that heavy furniture out of the way so we can find the dirt and dust from year of neglect and disregard. And when we are finished there, we need to go to our basements and attics to throw out the clutter.
For my Catholic friends and family, this process has to take place in the confessional. While I know many of you have valid issues and concerns with confession, the issues and concerns are more than likely a result of a lack of understanding and faith formation...both of which I was personally affected by for most of my life until I listened to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-sPJfaotsY
While Christmas is a beautiful day, a special time to gather with family and friends, we need to remember it is not a one day celebration; but rather a process of preparation. This Advent, let us celebrate His merciful and everlasting love and prepare for the birth of Christ. This Advent, I ask that you begin this celebration with me by first clearing out the cobwebs and asking for God's forgiveness. Let the miracle of Christmas begin today and in the depths of our hearts...prepare and make way for The Lord!