Here we are at the last stop of our journey to Bethlehem. Our journey of hope is coming to completion. Today we are given the teaching that for our hope to be fulfilled, it should be built upon trust, which is another way to say faith.
Israel was promised a King and they were called to repentance and at some points they showed to be so impatient. Today the fulfillment of the promise is put to trial with the extraordinary way God realizes it. Joseph who is the image and the symbol of the people of Israel waiting for the Day is in trouble. Should he separate from his wife? What about this strange message he is getting? Would the Messiah come in this way? Who should he trust, his people or the messenger? This is experienced by Mary as well. Do we remember her answer and question to the angel? God does things in his own ways… We are invited to only trust in Him; for He is always faithful to His promise no matter how long it takes for it to be fulfilled.
Advent as we see it, is a journey of the fulfilled relationship between hope and trust, that is faith. This finds its culmination in the presence of the Son of God among us, with the double truth this carries with it. All related to the meaning of his names: Jesus, which means “God saves”, and Emmanuel, “God with us”.
This overwhelming truth of the presence of God among us calls for faith and trust in the Lord. For Jesus reminds us that it is to God that we shall go and rely on in every step of our life. Only God saves, the True God who sends His Son for our salvation. For our hope and salvation to be fulfilled and nurtured, we are called to trust in God and to believe in his faithfulness to realize his promise. He saves, and he is among us.
Today, when you look at yourself, you may find yourself amidst a dilemma like St. Joseph. You might wonder where to place your foot on this trying journey of life. St. Joseph’s trust and faith in God reveals to us the truth that whoever relies on God will never be put to shame. Both Joseph and Mary were seen as a laughing stock in the eyes of their contemporaneous. While Mary was to be stoned, Joseph was ridiculed. Both, however, kept their trust in the Lord who is the source of all consolation. Like Mary and Joseph, you may see only hopelessness in the situation you experience today. But trusting in the Lord nurture the hope that God will reverse everything to our benefit. Because, for our God, there is nothing impossible. Mary trusted and she was vindicated. Joseph trusted, and he was rewarded. If you also trust in God amidst your predicaments, He will always give answer to you, and with him you will always have the last laughter. With God every problem finds response.
Let us continue to pray for one another and for our parish family.