December 19, Monday, 4th Week of Advent
Daily Readings: Judges 13:2-7, 24-25; Gospel: Luke 1:5-25
The theme of the readings for today is all about hope. Both the first reading and the gospel speak of the hope that God blesses his faithful servants. In those days, having no children in the family meant you were not favored in the eyes of God. Being unfavored by God made you an outcast in society.
In the first reading, despite the age of the wife of Manoah from the clan of the Danites, she was told by an unknown man that she would bear a son. Similarly, in the gospel, a barren old woman, Elizabeth, the wife of Zechariah, was told by an angel that he would bear a child. Both were mother-given instructions to be observed in bearing a child.
We know for a fact that women of advanced age already lose the hormones in their bodies that are responsible for pregnancy. Without this hormone, it is not possible to get pregnant. But the readings show that nothing is impossible with God, for he gives hope to his faithful servants.
It is very clear that God never abandoned his faithful servants, for both the husbands are all men of God, and despite not having a child, they continue to serve the Lord faithfully. As a reward, the Lord gave them hope through a message sent by God. Though they are uncertain about this message, they faithfully followed the instructions because they saw a glimpse of hope. They hope to have a child in the future and for how many years they wait for it, for the belief that a child is extremely valuable in a family. Without a child, a family is considered incomplete. A child always brings joy and honor to the family. A child is the result of a couple's love. A child is very precious in the eyes of everyone because this is the gift of God. It also shows that the clan will live on since the bloodline will be passed on to the next generation. Having a child in the family and in old age is greatly favored by God.
We often lose hope in our lives, and we easily give up. But as we entrust everything to God, we fervently pray that He will answer our pleading. Despite all the struggles and problems that we face, we continue to be faithful to our God, for we know that God never abandons his people and nothing is impossible with him.
Lord, as we struggle in our everyday lives, we pray for a glimpse of hope to sustain us and help us overcome those challenges in life. Amen.
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