Comfort To My People

Second Sunday of Advent (B)

“Comfort, give comfort to my people”, says your God. – Isaiah 40:1

You are seven years old, riding your bike on a  warm summer’s day. Your front tire hits a patch of sand and loses traction. You fall, skinning your right elbow and knee. The new wounds sting, but the sensation of falling is more frightening to you than the wounds. You seek your mother. If she’s available, you go to her immediately. If not, you tell her as soon as possible. She may give you some unsolicited advice about being careful on your bike – advice that is painfully obvious to you now. Chances are that she will also clean your scrapes, put ointment and bandages on them, give you a hug or a kiss, and reassure you that all is well. You may head out again, your scrapes still stinging. But you are no longer overwhelmed. Your mother consoled you and told you that it will be okay – and you believe her. You may even show off your new scars to your friends, as though you were a Purple Heart soldier with battle scars. Your mother’s comfort has made all the difference. Continue reading “Comfort To My People”

Spiritual Chemotherapy

Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Lent: Numbers 21:4-9; John 8:21-30

So Jesus said to them,
“When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will realize that I AM, and that I do nothing on my own, but I say only what the Father taught me.”  –  John 8:28

By the time we reach the age of fifty, most of us have either had some form of cancer or at least a couple of people we know well have had it. Even in an age of steadily-advancing medical knowledge and techniques, the word “cancer” can still elicit fear in the hearts of those who receive that diagnosis. It is usually seen as the most dangerous and frightening of all diseases.  Continue reading “Spiritual Chemotherapy”