Second Sunday of Advent, Year A

Inspired by Isaiah 11:1-10

“He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth.” Isaiah 11:3b-4b (NRSV)

Looks can be deceiving, and things are not always as they appear.  Too many times we are misled by carefully crafted appearances, scripted situations, oblique suggestions, and outright lies.  Too many people value their own advantage over justice and equity, and distrust reigns supreme in politics, business, even interpersonal relationships.  This is the way of the world.

But it is not the way of the Lord.

God is not deceived by appearances, nor is he led astray by lies.  God knows the innermost thoughts of our hearts.  He knows not only what we do, but why we do it.  God knows the fear that drives us to attack first, and the insecurity that inspires us to discredit others before they can discredit us.  He knows the wounds we hide behind our tough exteriors, and the desperation that results in our greed and selfishness.

Trust in the Lord’s goodness; let him free you from your self-created prison.  Confess your sins and your fears to him, and let him renew you with his righteousness and justice.

Let us pray.  God of truth, you know us better than we know ourselves.  Enable us to open our hearts to you, that we may experience your mercy and justice.  Through Christ our Lord, Amen.