Divine Office Reflections | Friday in the Third Week of Advent



O Adonai

O Lord of ancient Israel, who showed yourself to Moses in the burning bush, who gave him the holy law on Sinai mountain: Come, stretch out your mighty hand to set us free.


A Jewish rabbi once wrote regarding Moses and the burning bush,


“How long would you have to watch wood burn before you could know whether or not it was actually being consumed? Even dry kindling wood is not burned up for several minutes. This would mean that Moses would have had to watch the ‘amazing sight’ for several minutes before he could possibly know there was even a miracle to watch!… The trick is to pay attention to what is going on around you long enough to behold the miracle without falling asleep. There is another world, right here within this one, whenever we pay attention.”


Today’s O Antiphon recalls this event when God revealed Himself to Moses. During Advent, we ought to slow down and contemplate the Lord's works around us and within us. The Catechism tells us there are two principal ways by which we come to know that God exists – by looking at the world and at the human person. God continually makes use of these mediums to reveal Himself to us.


While the vision and true knowledge of God can only be received through faith, the Catechism says, “these proofs of God’s existence (the world and the human person) can predispose one to faith.” But in order for this to happen, we must slow down, take notice, and rediscover the beauty and wonder of God's creations. In this last week of Advent, let us pause long enough to pay attention to the small things that radiate the truth, goodness, and beauty of God. In so doing, we will prepare our hearts to marvel at and receive in faith the incarnation of our Lord at Christmas!


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