Isiah, the advent Prophet, envisions a world free of hatred, and rivalries, and filled with the peace that only God can bring.  He pictures a real world made as people were meant to be in God’s image and likeliness.    He calls us to prepare to be part of that world by acknowledging God’s Kingdom announced by Jesus.  That kingdom grows and flourishes in our lives and in our world whenever we do the will of God.

Unfortunately, we all experience a threefold alienation: from others and from ourselves.  We live in a secular world, a society organized apart from God.  Often, we not only tolerate this secular world, a society world, we embrace it.  We think and act by its standards rather than the standards of God’s kingdom.

We are often estranged from others.  We go our own way.  In the words of the songs:” I Did it My Way.”  The Advent liturgy calls us to harmony with others in our own homes, in our communities, in our own Church and to be reconciled with our enemies.  Globally it also calls nations to be reconciled with each other and to make straight the way of the Lord.

Too often we can be estranged even from ourselves.  Advent calls us through prayer and reflections on the Word of God improve our habits and attitudes, to be kinder and gentler in dealing with people, to realize we were not put on earth to do things for Christ but to do all things with Christ at our side.

Our Advent agenda therefore is not hidden but very much up front.  It is to make ready not our way or the way of the world but the way of the Lord.  We need to submit our will to be the will of the Lord. 

Maybe the following suggestions may help:

~ Renew and strengthen our prayers life at a specific time and place each day.  Fifteen minutes of  quiet time would do it.

~ Focus on the reasons for praise and thanksgiving beginning with the greatest gift of life itself given to each of us in unique, many-splendored ways.

~ See by faith the presence of God in our human relationships.  All of us are made in the image of God.

Listen to Isiah calling us to unclutter our eyes so they see and our ears, so they hear.  Discover what Christmas is all about.   Experience God’s presence among us.