“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” ~ Martin Luther King Jr.
They say that the best “tell” of a compulsive liar is the fact that the liar believes that everyone else lies. Why? Well, if the liar never tells the truth but only tells what is convenient, that person quickly believes that everyone else lives the same way. The liar has a hard time perceiving the truth. They see everything as, at best, a convenient lie.
In the same manner, if people live in darkness or in hate, there quickly becomes no room for light or love. The person who lives in darkness will believe that other people’s hearts are just as dark and will retreat even further into self, not chancing encounters with others. The hater will think that everyone hates and will react to people accordingly.
The Gospel at today’s Mass for the Second of Advent calls us to “prepare the way of the Lord, make straight His paths.” However, in order to prepare the way of the Lord, we need to move out of the darkness of sin in which we may live and cast out any hatred that may reside in our hearts. The only way we can do that is to allow the peace of Christ to come upon us, to overwhelm us, and to change us.
Peace is the relevant theme of the second week of Advent. Peace is so critical for our world. It seems as if the world has gone mad. Instead of peace, there is conflict. Instead of love, there is hatred. Instead of faithfulness, there is treachery. It is time to cast off these vestiges of sin in order to prepare us for the celebration of Christ’s birth. God will not force us to do so. We cannot force anyone to do so. It must be a free will choice made by each and every one of us.
If we are going to see the salvation of our God, we are going to have to look for it. We can only find it if we clear our minds, our hearts, and our lives from all that keeps us from God.
FAITH ACTION: Ask God to help you see each person as He sees them so that you may love them as He loves them.