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Environmental Stewardship Commission

Episcopal Diocese of Minnesota

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Year C, Advent 3 General Reflection on the Readings Episcopal Standard Lectionary


Old Testament (Hebrew Scripture):
Zephaniah 3:14-20
Psalm 85 or Canticle 9
New Testament:
Philippians 4:4-7(8-9)
Luke 3:7-18

Reflection on Third Sunday of Advent: Rejoice and Prepare by the Rev. Margaret W. Thomas

Activity and choice, meditation and forgiveness, cleansing and baptismal murmurings, water and words: these all are open to those who seek new life in change. What must one do? Ask the question of one’s self. What is bearing down? What is literally, killing one? What is shriveling one? What prevents the new sprouts that are watered, from bursting forth as in spring with new leaves?

Choose one for now to address in this Advent time. With God’s good grace and joy things may be changed. “Truth shall spring up from the earth, and righteousness shall look down from heaven. There is great hope.” (Psalm 85: v11, NRSV) Clean the garage, the closet, the refrigerator. Clean our hearts, and souls. Take the stuff not often used to the Goodwill or the Salvation Army. Give away something you prize, that is the Native American way. Give off the heart, not off the the abundance. Write one good letter that you have postponed. Make one procrastinated phone call. Now make the hated ones too while you have practiced.

Truth and earth are one. The roots of ourselves are nurtured or not in the oozy goozy moistness and abundance of our personal compost. If stirred and given away as a gift of moist richness, there will be more space and new forms may emerge.

Awareness of our earth issues, both literal, global, and personal will effect our ability to nurture and support sustainability for ourselves and others. We will recognize the pain and need of our neighbors. We will know for sure that what effects them effects us, just as we recognize that in our families and close friends. God may bring us grace, and be also able to rejoice with us as we love each other more.

What one thing can we create for each of our loved ones this year that will cost nothing? How can we be truly original, of our origins, of our earthiness, our own creation, just for the joy of it?

Copyright Statement

The Rev. Margaret W. Thomas was the Rector of St. Edward the Confessor Episcopal Church, Duluth, MN, when she wrote this reflection in 2003. Margaret and we welcome your comments. Please address your comments or additional reflections to Margaret W. Thomas or any MEESC member, or mail them to:

MEESC c/o C. Morello 4451 Lakeside Drive Eveleth, MN 55743-4400 USA

The MEESC assumes that all correspondence received is for publication on this web site. If your comments are not for publication, please so note on your correspondence. The MEESC reserves the right to decide which items are included on the website.

This page last updated 2006-12-20.

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