I believe in the eternal existence of the human soul. I live in space and time and matter; yet my life, in some mysterious way, is merged with God of the Universe, who transcends space, time, and matter. Some days, this is a comfort—after all, will this conversation or this physical pain or this frustrating situation matter in eternity?
But we are, indeed, placed in a physical universe, and our very existence is marked by time. How are we to deal with that? By wishing away the present, hurrying away from this reality to the next thing? By refusing to plan for the future or think about the past?
And when faced by liturgical time and its seasons—such as Advent—do we enter it joyfully or grudgingly?
The liturgical year is the Christian’s way of bringing to chronological time the sense and experience of sacred time. When we enter Advent—with its stories, songs, prayers, and rituals—we are, in a sense, re-experiencing those sacred, eternal events that burst into human time.
This means that when you read the prophets’ expectations of the coming savior, those expectations can become yours, too. The grand cycle of the eternal world catches you up in its rhythm.
During Advent, you’re not just marking time until Christmas. You are participating in every story of hope and expectation—from the world’s beginning to its final celebration in Christ’s glory.
So today, consider this marvelous hope:
“He shall judge between the nations,
and shall arbitrate for many peoples;
they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
and their spears into pruning hooks;
nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
neither shall they learn war any more.”
—Isaiah 2:4, NRSV
To follow with us on the Advent journey, visit the calendar on the Loyola Press website.