Advent is time for rehab. Re-habituating ourselves to living our true identity.
Like most rehab programs there are four aspects that enable us to rehab in such a manner that is lasting in its fruitfulness, lasting in its transformation.
The program consist in the four R's of Advent.
Advent is a time to remember. As Isaiah reminds the Israelites so the Liturgy invites us to remember who we are. We must be re awaken and roused from our slumber to remember our true identity. We are heirs to the kingdom, we are sons and daughters to the Father and we have forgotten.
Remember who you are, you are my son and you have forgotten me, these are the summation of God's call to the Israelites and to ourselves from the Father.
Advent is a time of reflection. We have been distracted by the economy, the market, the presidential election, by college football and everything else. Advent is a time to set aside quiet moments and reflect on how we have lived our identity.
It is not just a time for reflecting on what we have done wrong, but it also a time of reflection on what God has done right. A time to reflect on how God has led us through even in the hard times.
Often times we are nearsighted when it comes to God's plan unfolding. We just see the immediate confusion and chaos but we fail to look far enough ahead. Thus we get impatient.
We are also farsighted when it comes to ourselves; we are afraid to take a closer look to see our our life is unfolding in cooperation with God's call.
When we are nearsighted when it comes to God's plan and farsighted when it comes to our life then sinfulness takes over and our life begins to unravel. Advent is a time of refocus. A time to be watchful, to recognize the presence of Christ in our life. It is a time to see Him not in the big moments but also the quiet subtle moments.
Advent is a time of repentance. Repentance is often looked upon as a negative action but in reality it is a positive action in our life. It is where we open our hearts and no longer live close din on ourselves. It is about reaching outward and upward. It is about returning to reclaim our identity.
It is a time of facing our guilt, confessing our guilt and confessing our faith. Here we allow our faith and identity in Christ to conquer our guilt and to set us free.
Advent is a time of rejoicing. We must remember the first words that inaugurated Christianity in to history, jesus into humanity. The angel Gabriel declared unto Mary, "rejoice, highly favored one." In deed we are to rejoice for in Jesus through Mary we are highly favored.
Rejoicing is about recognizing God's victory and we are invited to be victorious along side of him.
We rejoice because though we may abandon God he does not abandon us.
It is rejoicing that enables Mary to stand at the foot of the cross and enables us to stand erect and make ourselves ready for the coming of Christ.
Remember, Reflect, Repent, Rejoice, here enter fully into advent and are re-habituated to being who we are called to to be, heirs to the kingdom.
Remember you are my son, and you have forgotten me. Let us rouse ourselves from slumber and never forget who we are called to be and never forget who calls us into being.