Nativity of the Lord (Mass of the day)

Nativity of the Lord (Mass of the day)

Gio, 24 Dic 20 Lectio Divina - Anno B

        Isaiah 62:11-12, Hebrews 1: 1 - 6,   John 1: 1 - 18

        

 Prayer 

O God, who in a marvellous way created us in your image, and in a more marvellous way you renewed and redeemed us, grant us the grace to share the divine life of your Son, who today wished to assume our human nature.

Is. 62:11-12

The liturgical text is taken from the second part of the book, which describes the rebirth of Jerusalem. The passage begins with a message given to unknown messengers who must make it heard to the ends of the earth. However, it is addressed directly to the "daughter of Zion", that is to Jerusalem, to whom it is announced: "Behold, your Saviour is coming; behold, he has his reward with him, his reward is before him "(v. 11). This short verse indicates YHWH's saving initiative.

The oracle proceeds with the description of the effects of YHWH's intervention, which are indicated by assigning symbolic names (v. 12). The rebirth of Israel after exile does not only concern the Israelites, but has an exemplary value for all mankind. There are always moments of crisis in the history of nations. The example of Israel shows how they can be overcome only with faith: faith in a God who is the source and guarantor of the values ​​that found the life of society. A rebirth in a nationalistic key does not benefit the group of peoples or even the individual nation.

Hebrews 1: 1 - 6

Heb 1:1, the very first verses remind us of the definitive fulfillment of God's revelation in Jesus Christ. The story of God's revelation to men begins with the chosen people, is intertwined with the unfolding of the promise which is fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the word of God who became flesh. The promise is embodied in the Messiah anticipated for centuries who achieves liberation, builds salvation and gives it to all. In him the promised gift is manifested, dedicated to all humanity and capable of arousing the desire for a gift, for a response of every man, in every age.

The letter to the Hebrews says of him that he is "the radiance of his glory ". An expression that must be read in all its biblical depth, that is, in its meaning of manifestation of the magnificence of God. In other words: Christ in his human reality is the revelation of the extraordinary divine magnanimity. In his face is the face of an essentially loving and therefore beneficial and extraordinarily prodigal God. But Christ did not come to reveal to us only the face of the Father, but also that of man, called to be a son in the Son, and therefore to follow in his footsteps.

 

John 1: 1 - 18

The Evangelist John in his Prologue presents us with this very mystery: " The Word became flesh ": this is the content of Christmas. The apostle means that the Son of God, who exists from eternity, who is God and Creator, who is the source of Life and Light, is truly man and not only in appearance. Christ is the light that never goes out. We are the mirror of that light. The beautiful light, which illuminates the darkness of the world. In fact, wherever there are Christians there is the light of Christ, the light of good, the light of peace, the light of love. Let us try to become more and more the true light of Christ to warm the path with the rays of Christ.

In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God. John begins his Gospel with a poem, with a song, and immediately projects Jesus of Nazareth towards the beginning and towards the divine. No other song, no other story can go back further, fly higher than this one that contains the beginning of all things: everything was done through him. Nothing at all without him.

In principle, everything, nothing, are words that put us in relationship with the absolute and with the eternal. The hand of God on all creatures of the cosmos and " the divine shines from the depths of every being ". 

After his Christmas it is now the time of our Christmas: Christ came and is in us as a force of births. Christ is born so that I am born. Be born anew and different! The Word of God is like a seed that generates according to its own species, God can only generate children of God. Why did God become man? For God to be born in the soul, for the soul to be born in God.

And the Word became flesh. Not only did Jesus become, man, but flesh, human existence, mortal, fragile in solidarity. God no longer moulds man with dust from the ground, as he was in the beginning, but makes himself moulded dust himself. The potter makes clay from a small vase. And if you have to cry, he too will learn to cry. And if you have to die, he too will know death.

Since then there is a fragment of the Logos in every flesh, something of God in every man. There is holiness and light in every life. The Word enters the world and brings the life of God into, the very life of God in us. The ultimate depth of Christmas: God in our flesh. And the destiny of every creature is to become flesh imbued with heaven.

 

- How do we plan to spend our Christmas? Accepting the persuasive invitation of consumerist myths? Or as an opportunity to return to ourselves, to re-center ourselves, to grasp the appeal that comes to us from the poor and exploited of the earth and to find, together with them and thanks to them, a new meaning for our existence?

- Do we know how to read in everyday events, even the most banal, the small fragment of a universal history of salvation? What space do we give to our hope?

- What concrete commitment are we willing to assume in order to ourselves become hearers and heralds of the Word of mercy and salvation?

- Are God's gifts always recognized as such also by us?

- The announcement of peace is communicated to the shepherds in the middle of the night and immediately they saw a great light. Do we have our eyes open to be able to contemplate it?

 

Concluding Prayer

Spirit of truth, sent to us by Jesus to guide us to the whole truth, open our minds to understanding the Scriptures. You who, descending on Mary of Nazareth, made her a good ground where the Word of God was able to germinate, purify our hearts from everything that puts resistance to the Word. Prepare  for us to learn like her to listen with a good and perfect heart to the Word that God addresses to us in life and in Scripture, to keep it and produce fruit with our perseverance.