By Claudia Mair Burney
The third Sunday of Advent
This Sunday is called “Gaudete” Sunday, which means “rejoice” in Latin. Traditionally, we light the rose colored candle on our Advent wreaths, and the warm, hint of crimson reminds us of how close we are to Christmas. Joy infuses our expectation this week. The coming of Christ is very near. Our focus shifts here, and we recall the reason for the season: the innocent babe born in Bethlehem is the same one who will ransom us from our guilt, and save us from our sins.
Prepare my heart to welcome Jesus, and remove every trace of sadness that may blunt the joy and hope your presence will bring. Like your mother’s was, my life is fraught with difficulties. Help me remember her rejoicing, and pray as she did, ‘My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior. For you have looked with favor on the lowliness of your servant; I am so blessed. Mighty One, you have done great things for me, and holy is your name. I need your saving grace, Lord, this week, and every day of my life.”
“Come, Lord Jesus.”