by Nancy Small
Pax Christi USA Ambassador of Peace
In a beautiful prophecy of what is to come, Zechariah speaks of the saving power of God throughout the ages, saying, “Blessed are you, God of Israel, for you have visited and redeemed your people and have raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of your servant.” He then speaks to his son, John, telling him what is to come. He says, “And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High, for you will go before the Holy One to prepare God’s ways … to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” So clear, the vision of Zechariah. I wonder if he also knew the suffering that would be part of John’s life, all that he would endure for the sake of Jesus’s name.
This day is likely to be a busy one for all of us as we make our final preparations for Christmas Day. Let us remember that we, too, like John, are called to go before the Holy One, to prepare God’s ways, to guide our feet and the feet of others into the way of peace. We are to be the midwives of God’s new creation, present as we celebrate again the coming of Jesus, making a way for God incarnate to grow and give witness in the world around us.
* This reflection is from Awaiting Christmas: Beauty Ancient, Ever Knew, Advent Reflections 1997.