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Wednesday, December 24, 2003

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2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8-11, 16
Psalm 89:2-5, 27, 29
Luke 1:67-79

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god's last-minute preparations

"Now then, speak thus to My servant David, 'The Lord of hosts has this to say.' " —2 Samuel 7:8

On this last day of Advent, the Church brings to our attention something most of us have probably never thought of: the prophecy of Nathan to David that David's house would endure forever (2 Sm 7:16). Zechariah prophesied accordingly of "a Horn of saving strength for us in the house of David" (Lk 1:69). Because of Nathan's prophecy, it is of utmost significance that Jesus is the Son of David.

The Jewish people and the Church have treasured this prophecy and many other prophecies for thousands of years because these prophecies continue to penetrate the darkness of age after age with their light. In these last few hours of Advent, let us guard against being so busy preparing for the holidays that we are not well prepared for Christ at Mass, that is, Christmas. Let us make it a priority to read and pray some of the prophecies of Advent. Let us read and pray the four readings from the prophet Isaiah for the four Masses of Christmas. At first, these prophecies may not seem to apply to us, but "keep your attention closely fixed on [them], as you would on a lamp shining in a dark place until the first streaks of dawn appear and the morning star rises in your hearts" (2 Pt 1:19).

The true light of Christmas is the light of prophecy. On this last day of Advent, live your baptismal sharing in Christ, the Prophet.

Prayer:  Father, send the Holy Spirit to help me unlearn some of the preparations for the holidays which conflict with preparing for Christmas.

Promise:  "Zechariah his father, filled with the Holy Spirit, uttered this prophecy..." —Lk 1:67

Praise:  "Blessed be the Lord the God of Israel because He has visited and ransomed His people" (Lk 1:68). Alleluia!

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert A. Stricker, June 23, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 26, 2003