Back in July, some of the major retailers mentioned that they were not doing Black Friday this year. It seemed odd but made absolute sense for that sector of the economy. In the world of retail, travel, education and many other fields, planning is done well in advance. In finance, we speak of futures and hedge funds, all geared toward future possibilities and maximizing our investments.
Even for ordinary day folk, it is a challenge to try to live in the present moment. It has been an extraordinary year - we have had to be on our guard and have had to keep a watchful eye out for the complex-related issues of Covid 19. In short, adaptation and discernment have been key themes and a reality to live with for us in 2020.
In this week's Gospel, Jesus speaks to the disciples and asks them to be watchful and be alert. "You do not know when the time will come." We can surely say in response, Lord I have been watchful and alert- how many times has my temperature been taken this year? How many times have I been asked the questions on the Covid checklist?
But perhaps what the Lord is getting at is this, even if the extraordinary becomes ordinary we should have an attitude of preparedness. As we begin this Advent, we may challenge ourselves to have a preparedness plan - ever have a fire drill at home? What about the safety drill before we take off on an aircraft, we can do that, right?
How about a spiritual growth plan - some goals and a readiness plan for 2021 right now? Whether we sketch it out on the back of a napkin or use our personal devices to remind us, let us be intentional and take concrete steps.
Give yourself a little breathing room each day. For example, you expect slow traffic on snowy days, right? So, make sure you plan your days for all the delays, tangents, and detours. Leave extra time for the unexpected and a little time for yourself to take a break. Of course, ask God for help. God is always with us - our God is a God of
history and has been with us in the past. Our God is a God of mystery. We meet God each day in the present moment. Our God is also a God of glory. We will meet the Lord face-to-face at the end of time when the promise of the resurrection and life without end will fully be realized.
Let us start with our parish prayer to get us focused for the coming week. Loving God and Father - You sent your Spirit to us to help us on our way. Give us the grace, as people of Kaukauna Catholic Parishes, to discover the life of Jesus and to live and share this joy with others- so that your will may be done on earth as it is in heaven. Through Jesus Christ our Lord forever and ever. Amen