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First Sunday of Advent

Most of us have played or watched ball games. During the game our eyes are focused on one thing--the ball. We even hear from young men, “ball is life.” As our eyes are on the ball, Matthew 24:37-44 reminds us to focus our lives on Jesus to be ready for His coming.

Is our heart focused on Jesus, or is it distracted by our concerns or the things of this life? Jesus does not emphasize the wicked behavior of the people in those days before the flood. Rather, Jesus describes the normal behavior of life. We may say that there was nothing bad going on, but God is reminding us to be aware about the distractions of everyday life. For more than 100 years while building the ark, Noah kept telling the people of God’s judgment because of the evil heart of man. The people did not listen and it was too late. For us today, God is reminding us through His Word that Jesus will come again, and we must be prepared for His coming. Do we pay attention, or are we asleep?

Romans 13:11-14 goes, “Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now ... the day is near. Therefore, let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.” Now is the time to be spiritually awake. When Jesus returns in His glory, will we be watching and ready? Or we will be caught unaware, spiritually deaf, sleeping?

The gospel reading today warns us also not to rely on our own goodness, just because we stay away from bad habits or activities. Remember that during the days of Noah, many of them were swept away by the waters of the flood--simply because they were not watching continuously. God wants us to focus firmly on Him. He wants us remember every day His unconditional love. He wants us to contemplate on His promises every day.

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