Don´t we all remember like it was yesterday, that emotional moment when the Pope, alone, in a rainy Saint Peter’s Square, led a moment of prayer accompanied by thousands and thousands of people from their computer screens?
When the pandemic began, like the disciples in the middle of the storm, we were lost and anguished. The disciples, seeing that Jesus was sleeping, woke him up saying: “Master, don’t you care? We are going down” (Mark 4:38) They thought, the Pope told us, that Jesus wasn’t interested in them; he wasn’t paying attention to them… However, he cares about us more than anyone else.
More than eight months have passed since then. And we continue to find ourselves in a very difficult situation. We are approaching Christmas and in some countries we don’t even know if this time we can celebrate it as a family or not.
Illness, isolation, death, economic vulnerability, fear and estrangement are already part of our daily scenario. You don’t hear about anything else on the news anymore. And although it seems that we are already adapting a bit to this “new normal”, the truth is that deep in our heart there is a background of tiredness and a struggle to keep hope burning.
Perhaps we have never dared to say these words to God, or perhaps we have. But this season of Advent that we are now beginning is precisely the time to let our heart speak. “Lord, don’t you care if we perish? Have you forgotten about us?” Lord, we know that you are a God close to us in our pain, but where are you now? Come Lord, come to us! Come to save us! ”. That is how the people of Israel spoke to God: “Oh that you would tear open the heavens and come down!”
It is only when our heart sets off in search of Him, dares to ask itself questions and to cry out to God on the way, that we realize that we are not alone. This is precisely what Advent is, a journey in which we call upon God, we beg him to make himself present and we try to “wake him up”: “Don’t you care if we perish?”
On the way, when we feel alone in the middle of this night and our hearts are awake, looking for Him … suddenly, we realize that a hand is grasping ours with warmth and firmness. “I’m here… it’s me. Yes, I have torn open the heavens and I have come down. I will never leave you alone. ” It is him. It’s God made man!
The journey to Christmas that we will make once again over these next four weeks is very important, because it will help us to personally discover, deep in our hearts, as we walk that, yes, God cares about us. He cares so much about us that he has torn open the heavens and come down. He has shared with us a story full of joys and sorrows; of hopes and doubts, anguish and sadness. And he has shared it precisely so that we will NEVER feel alone.
Today I invite you to look back over these last few months and to remember a moment where you have cried, with or without tears. Bring it to your mind and heart! It could be a moment of feeling sad, vulnerable or fearful, for yourself or for someone you love. Discover that it was precisely then that He was holding your hand, whispering in your ear: “I care about you … I care about you … I’m here and I will never leave you” Don’t let this Advent pass without discovering the touch of the living God in your life. Don’t let it go by without opening your heart to discover him alive and present in today’s reality, bringing us hope and comfort.