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Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Tuesday of the Second Week of Advent

Tuesday of the Second Week of Advent - 10th December


Gospel
Matthew 18:12-14


'Tell me. Suppose a man has a hundred sheep and one of them strays; will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the stray?
In truth I tell you, if he finds it, it gives him more joy than do the ninety-nine that did not stray at all.
Similarly, it is never the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.


We’ve already reflected on the role of Christ as our shepherd, and on His mercy to us when we are lost. He has given us a way to return to Him, to gain forgiveness for our sins. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is a gift, a gift in which God seeks to bring us to Him again. Many people see Reconciliation as judgemental, as frightening. But the true meaning of the sacrament is so much deeper and more beautiful than that. When we confess our sins, we are not only admitting our faults and our sins but acknowledging the infinite depths of God’s love and mercy. We are repaired and restored to the embrace of the Lord.

The other thing we see in this is just how much God loves us! Under normal circumstances, any ordinary human being of sound mind would not leave ninety-nine sheep for one lost sheep! God is different. He is totally and utterly and unconditionally in love with us, His children. He rejoices in one person coming back to Him after having gone down the “wrong path” more than ninety-nine, if not a million, people on the path that He is leading them on! This is unconditional love, the love that we must receive from God with openness so that His overflowing mercy may pour from His heart to our own. In this way, we can be truly reconciled to God.

Advent Advantage: Attend the Sacrament of Reconciliation if you can. Say an Act of Contrition and make a thorough examination of conscience. Thank God for His mercy and His greatness!

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