Friday, December 16, 2016

Dec. 16, 2016: Friday of the Third Week in Advent

Dec. 16, 2016: Friday of the Third Week in Advent

Jesus said to the Jews: “You sent messengers to John, and he testified to the truth. Not that I accept such human testimony, but I say these things so that you may be saved. He was a burning and shining lamp, and you were willing to rejoice for a while in his light. But I have a testimony greater than John’s.
“The works that the Father has given me to complete, the very works that I am doing, testify on my behalf that the Father has sent me.”(John 5:33-36)

Our 16-month-old daughter finally taught herself to climb up onto the couch in our family room after months of looking up longingly and reaching and stretching for it. The maneuver begins with her standing on her tippy toes, then launching one leg up onto the couch, and then pulling the rest of her body and second leg up to be with the first leg. Once she is up, she rejoices in the perspective of her elevated vantage point and the new experiences within her reach.

My wife and I marvel at her skill for a half-second before we realize we need to teach her how to get down safely! As soon as she starts to seem bored or look down at the floor, we remind her, “Feet first!” She’ll eventually rotate herself 180 degrees before sliding her feet over the edge of the couch and landing semi-gracefully onto the floor to continue exploring.

John the Baptist’s message throughout this Advent season reminds me of the shouts of “Feet first!” echoing through our home. My career, the daily hustle and bustle of marriage and parenting, purchasing our first house, and Christmas shopping are like the couch I’m always stretching and reaching to climb in order to experience new things. John the Baptist is telling me, “Feet first!” by inviting me to pause and turn around: repent, forgive, and seek reconciliation.

If I’m able to listen, I hope to slide my feet off the couch and land semi-gracefully in this new year to welcome Jesus.
-Peter Tooher