First Reading: Genesis 49:2,8-10
Gospel Reading: Matthew 1:1-17
Today we begin the nine days leading up to Christmas; you might call it a novena. The church marks down the days to Christmas with particular readings for each day. The readings change now to words of joyful expectation for the coming of the saviour.
The first reading today from Genesis calls on the people to gather round and listen to the story of Israel. There is talk of the one who comes, the one to whom people shall owe obedience. Already in the book of Genesis they are talking of a saviour. Israel waited so long for Jesus. No wonder we approach this time with great joy.
In the Gospel of Matthew, we hear the genealogy of Jesus from Abraham 'til his birth. Matthew is setting out the truth that Jesus is the son of Abraham and David, the one who is to come.
In this week we begin to really anticipate Jesus who is coming.
Every year Jesus comes to us in some new way. He slightly changes for us as we grow older and our life experience changes. This is only natural. The Jesus I knew at twenty would not be able to help me at nearly 60.
We should be preparing ourselves to meet Jesus anew at Christmas. He will come to teach us something we have never seen or understood before, he shall enter our hearts in a new way.
Jesus is ever new, always ancient and always new. Our part is to allow him to touch our hearts afresh.