1st Sunday Of Advent – Year C
Fr. Mark Gatto
Preached: December 2, 2018
Do you have any dreams, something you hope for? When I speak of dreams, I do not mean fantasies, but a goal, something that you are ready to work for, to sacrifice to achieve it?
Cardinal Suenens, one of the leading figures of Vatican Council II in the 1960’s said this about dreams. “Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.” Dreams are a vision that directs our life, our decisions, our actions, that give focus and direction to our life. We need dreams, that give our life meaning and sense of direction. Dreams keep us focused on what really matters?
Jesus says, “Be on your guard so that your hearts are not weighed down … Be alert at all times.”
Advent is a season of waiting with hope, to focus on our dreams. So that we are on guard, alert in our life. That we are moving in a direction and in a way that will lead us to fulfill our dreams.
There are two dreams that should direct our lives: First, the dream of heaven. Eternal life. That death is not the end. In the Resurrection of Jesus we have seen that this dream is possible, and we are to live our lives with this as our goal, our direction. Do we really want to enter eternal life? Are we ready to make the sacrifices, to pay the price to make this dream come true?
St. Paul says to the Thessalonians, “you learned from us how you ought to live and please God,…” When we embrace the dream of heaven, then it will cause us to realize what really matters. What we do not need, what we can let go of, and what should be the focus of our lives.
But, as Christians, our focus is not only on an after life as though this life does not matter. We also are to embrace the dream of God for this life. We pray, “Thy will be done.” The dream of God is to be our dream for this world. What is God’s dream for our world, for humanity?
God wills that we human beings will live as brothers and sisters, in harmony, in peace. God wills that each human being is able to live in basic dignity. So, we need to make this our dream as well and we need to be ready to work and pay the price to help make this come true. Beginning in our own family, our own community, our own parish, our own place of study or work.
During this Advent season we will see figures like John the Baptist, Mary, Joseph, the Prophets, who embraced the dream of God and directed their life to making this come true. They dreamed dreams, the dream of God, and were ready to pay the price to make it come true.
As we follow the Advent wreath through this season, open our hearts to the dream of God. The vision of heaven, eternal life and the vision of a human world that is one human family. When we make these dreams of God our dreams, then we will have a sense of meaning and direction for our lives. We will not get lost in so many things that do not really matter.
“Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true.” This Advent we are to embrace God’s Dream like Mary, so that we can work to give birth to those dreams in our world.