Advent and waiting

Yesterday morning in prayer, a short sentence from the prophet Zephaniah struck me,

"Therefore, wait for me, says the Lord. " – Zephaniah 3:8a

I spent the rest of the day contemplating this phrase. How do I wait for God? Isn't that what Advent is all about – waiting for Christmas? I realized that waiting for God doesn't mean sitting around idly. God invites us to wait for Him in prayer and in expectation – actively waiting.

So this morning, I thought I'd pray my morning prayers in the small chapel before work. About half way through, a priest came in to set up for Holy Mass. He invited me to stay for Mass and of course I said yes! I was the only one in the pews. It was such a blessing! It was one of those moments that made me think, "only God could arrange that!"

In this experience, God taught me what Advent is all about. What was so beautiful about this spontaneous Mass, is that I was prepared for it. (If it wasn't for Advent, I'm not sure I would have been ready!) Since it is Advent, I had been fasting, I was dressed nicely, and not only was I praying, but I was in the chapel!

We prepare for Christmas by preparing for Holy Mass. Advent gives us the opportunity to show God that we're ready to receive Jesus. That is why prayer, fasting and almsgiving are the keys to opening our hearts and making them receptive. 

Imagine if we lived with an Advent heart year-round? In difficult moments, to ask ourselves, "would I be ready to go to Mass and receive Jesus right now if I had the sudden opportunity?" 

Christmas Eve is a week away, are you ready?