Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Earth Will Be Full Of The Knowledge Of The LORD!

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah 11:1-10

On that day a shoot will sprout from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a bud shall blossom. The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him: the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of power, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD, and he will delight in the fear of the LORD. He will not judge by what he sees with his eyes, or decide by what he hears with his ears; but with righteousness he will judge the needy, with justice he will give decisions for the poor of the earth. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth; with the breath of his lips he will slay the wicked. Righteousness will be his belt and faithfulness the sash around his waist.

The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the young lion will browse together; and a little child will lead them. The cow will feed with the bear, their young will lie down together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox. The infant will play near the cobra’s lair, and the young child put his hand into the viper's nest. There will be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.

On that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the nations; the Gentiles will rally to him, and dwelling place will be glorious.


Responsorial Psalm 71

R. Justice shall flourish in his time and fullness of peace for ever.

O God, with your judgment endow the king,
And with your justice, the king’s son;
He shall govern your people with justice
And your afflicted ones with judgment.

Justice shall flower in his days,
And profound peace, till the moon be no more.
May he rule from sea to sea,
And from the River to the ends of the earth.

He shall rescue the poor when he cries out,
And the afflicted when he has no one to help him.
He shall have pity for the lowly and the poor;
The lives of the poor he shall save.

May his name be blessed forever;
As long as the sun his name shall remain.
In him shall all the tribes of the earth be blessed;
All the nations shall proclaim his happiness.

R. Justice shall flourish in his time and fullness of peace for ever.


A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke 10:21-24

Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit, and said, "I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.

All things have been committed to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and no one knows who the Father is except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him."

Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, "Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I tell you that many prophets and kings wanted to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it."

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Have you been in a conversation lately about health care reform? …ending the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq? …the state of the economy? … world hunger? Or any major social issue? Was there someone that was the voice of hope? Someone that painted a picture of how the future could be? Someone who spoke in a way that made you feel it might be possible? If so, there was probably also a naysayer who spoke up – “That will never happen”; “Not possible.” The cloud of cynicism rises up and smothers hopefulness.

I get so frustrated in those conversations…I want to say to the cynic, “Quiet! Let’s hear the hopeful vision… I want to see and hear and feel and taste what that might be like … just for a minute…just for 30 seconds! To not have men and women going off to war every day and hearing a “salute to the troops” every morning. (Not because they don’t deserve every minute of this, but because the wars are over.) To know that we have made it possible for everyone to have access to basic health care. Or to know that no one has to go to bed hungry tonight, not having eaten for days. I just want to imagine, for a few moments, what that world might look like and sound like and feel like!”

The first reading today is just that… the lone, hopeful, visionary voice of the prophet Isaiah. We read it knowing that Isaiah was anticipating the savior, “forth-telling” the future, trying to instill hope, painting a vision of an ideal world that awaited the Israelites. I’m sure he had his critics… “He’s nuts…. A wolf the guest of the lamb?? Wild animals led by a child?? Never happen.”
The naysayers, then and now, miss the point! Unless we first see the vision, hear the hope, and taste our desires for peace and our longing for love, strategies and “realistic plans” are just pushing pieces around on the game board. Every person that can see and articulate a hopeful vision is a gift to us… they help us see a better world… our hope is stirred…our desires are again deeply felt. They shake us out of our complacency and remind us that the One we call “God” is beyond anything we can imagine, and, even now is “ising” everywhere! We need these folks to set fire to our desires, to rattle our hearts and habits, so we can see clearly. And then we may know the next right thing to do. It might be to call our senators, protest or pray, but it also might be to just do what’s in front of us… like take out the trash and walk the dog.

This Advent let the “Breath” of the Lord rest upon you; the Breath of wisdom and understanding breathe in you; the Breath of counsel and strength and knowledge and wonder of the Lord be your delight.

Diane Jorgensen
School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
Creighton University On Line Ministries

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