At that same hour Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” Then turning to the disciples, Jesus said to them privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see! For I tell you that many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
What a comfort it is to hear Jesus say that the starting point of our faith is so simple that it is best received by “little ones.” God gives us gifts such as wisdom and learning, yet the beginning of our relationship with God lies in this simple openness to God, a beginning to which we must return time and time again.
What is it like to receive God as a little one? I imagine it’s a lot like the moment when God’s light shines on a fallow field within our heart or our world, unimportant and forgotten, populated by a few sheep and a few shepherds, so flooding it with joy that it comes to know its own dignity in an instant.
Today I give thanks for the “little ones,” the fallow fields of our hearts and our world that await the arrival of joy.
God, during Advent, may we remember the greatest gift ever given: your only Son, Jesus Christ. Fill our hearts with wonder and gratitude as we think of our Savior putting aside his heavenly glory and coming among us. As we prepare to celebrate Christmas, grow our understanding about the impact of our Lord’s birth. By Christmas day, may our hearts overflow with thanksgiving as we embrace the greatest of all promises: God with us!
—The Jesuit Prayer Team