But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.
The days grow shorter. The leaves begin to brown and fall. Flowers begin to wither. All signs that something is coming…winter. To prepare, we might cut wood for the fireplace, put away the pool toys, and get out the sweaters and jackets. We want to be prepared for the coming weather. For some it's an exciting time.
Over the last few weeks and this weekend, we hear Jesus share parables about the coming of the Son of God. Many parables centered on whether we will recognize him when he comes, or if we are prepared for that coming. In today's first reading from Revelation, the author tells of the conflict of good and evil, and signs for the coming of the Son of God. Centuries earlier, the Jews were held captive in Babylon. But the angel in Revelation told of the casting out of Babylonians and of the preparation for the wedding feast of the Lamb. Babylon can represent the captivity of sin in our own lives that holds us back from good. We know the Lamb is Jesus, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world. As we say in Mass just before communion, "Blessed are those who are called to the supper of the Lamb." Our response, "Lord I am not worthy that you should come under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed." All of us need to prepare for the feast. As we approach the first Sunday of Advent, we begin that season of preparation for Jesus to come to earth. How will you use this season to prepare? Instead of spending the season fretting over meals, gifts, parties and such, how about spending some time in prayerful anticipation of meeting Jesus this Christmas season?