December 6, 2008


2nd Sunday of Advent
Mark 1: 1-8 “Prepare the way of the Lord, make straight his paths.”

A basketball in my hands is worth about 100 pesos
A basketball in Michael Jordan's hands is worth about $33 million.
It depends whose hands it's in.

A tennis racket is useless in my hands.
A tennis racket in Andre Agassi's hands is worth millions.
It depends whose hands it's in.

A rod in my hands will keep away an angry dog.
A rod in Moses' hands will part the mighty sea.
It depends whose hands it's in.

The lame, the blind, the crippled, the dumb and many other sick people
In my hands might find comfort.
But the lame, the blind, the crippled, the dumb and other sick people
In Jesus’ hand will find total healing and consolation.
It depends whose hand they are in.

Nails in my hands might produce a birdhouse.
Nails in Jesus Christ's hands will produce salvation for the entire world.
It depends whose hands it's in.

Most of our sins come from our desire to control everything around us - people, environment, events, and most of all the will of God. In our desire to control everything, we put everything in our hands. Pain and frustration come when we failed to control people, events, and fate. God wants us to let go of our compulsion to control, leave the joystick in God’s hand and He will take care of us.

Our advent readings for today remind us to prepare the way for the coming of our Savior Jesus - the Son of God who put his whole life in his Father’s hands and found fulfillment in following the will of God. Jesus knows that life’s fulfillment and meaning depends on whose hand it’s in. He knows it is good to leave everything into the hands of somebody who holds the future.

Unfortunately, we don’t want to put our total trust in God’s hands. We find God slow in answering our prayers. Sometimes we don’t want his way of handling things. We don’t want to wait. Waiting for us may mean delays, uncertainties and labor in different queue of life for a long time. Waiting gives us pain and makes us impatience. We want an instant solution, instant answer, and instant success. Thus, to put our life in God’s hand and allow him to take control of our life’s joystick becomes difficult for us. Trusting God becomes our lifelong struggle and I realize that most of my sins come from my desire to control everything including God.

Advent is a time to STOP and joyfully surrender to God our life’s joystick. Allow God’s hands to show us the way, the truth and the life. When we allow the Lord to run our lives, our waiting becomes a joyful anticipation that something wonderful is about to unfold in our lives. A certain excitement builds up within us and we find ourselves looking forward to something new and life-giving. We need to have an open mind for this kind of waiting - a willingness to accept whatever happens or whoever enters our world. We need a big bag of patience and faith here. Although sometimes, when it seems that God’s answer seems nowhere in sight, we complain that God seems oblivious to our needs. But in our Second Reading, Peter gave us an assurance to let go and let God, “the Lord is not being slow to carry out his promises”. On the contrary, “He is being patient with you all, wanting nobody to be lost and everybody to be brought to change his ways.” ( 2 Peter 3:9).

We may end up of frustrated, sad and hopeless when we place everything in our hands. Fear not. Look at Jesus, Mary, and Joseph who placed their trust in God’s hands - that full trust they rendered to God allowed Him to fully use them. They became His channels of grace and turned their lives into a miracle.

Two fish and 5 loaves of bread in my hands is a couple of fish sandwiches.
Two fish and 5 loaves of bread in God's hands will feed thousands.
It depends whose hands it's in.

Our happiness and fulfillment depend on whose hands we place our trust.
In this advent season, why not totally trust God and see the difference? Remember, when you jump in faith, God will do two possible things … He will either catch you or give you wings to fly.

-Fr. Willy M. Samson, SJ
Western Mindanao Medical Center
December 7, 2008

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