That Comforting Voice …

Tuesday of the Second Week of Advent
December 6, 2022

Today’s Readings:

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we once again hear that powerful passage from Isaiah, “Comfort Ye, My People”.

In these words from ancient Isaiah, also suggest echos of the Baptist’s voice, yet to be born, but fashioned from the same hope:

A voice cries out:
In the desert prepare the way of the LORD!
Make straight in the wasteland a highway for our God!
Every valley shall be filled in,
every mountain and hill shall be made low;
The rugged land shall be made a plain,
the rough country, a broad valley.
Then the glory of the LORD shall be revealed,
and all people shall see it together;
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

Isaiah 40:1-2

Our Gospel gives us the gentle parable of the Good Shepherd who finds and comforts the lost sheep. This Divine Shepherd rejoices in the chance to seek out the hurt sheep and to comfort them, just as God rejoices in comforting and healing us.

And finding the sheep, amen, I say to you, the shepherd rejoices more over it
than over the ninety-nine that did not stray.
In just the same way, it is not the will of your heavenly Father
that one of these little ones be lost.”

As we listen to today’s magnificent music, let us slowly name in our prayer those who most need God’s comfort – the “little ones” – not so much in stature – but in hope, freedom, justice, and the blessings of this world. 

We may pray for ourselves, for someone we love, for those we know by name, or for those dear to God though nameless to us – all who suffer throughout the world.

Poetry: Shepherd – William Blake

How sweet is the Shepherd's sweet lot,
From the morn to the evening he strays:
He shall follow his sheep all the day
And his tongue shall be filled with praise.

For he hears the lambs innocent call,
And he hears the ewes tender reply,
He is watchful while they are in peace,
For they know when their Shepherd is nigh

Music: Comfort Ye from Handel’s Messiah, sung by Jerry Hadley

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