Today begins the O Antiphons. Traditionally, listed from last to first in Latin they spell ERO CRAS, which means “Tomorrow, I will come.” That’s what we are waiting for in Advent, the second coming of Christ. We celebrate his birth while awaiting his second coming.
The O Antiphon for today is O Sapientia, O Wisdom. Each antiphon has a corresponding verse in “O Come, Emmanual.”
O come, O Wisdom from on high,
who orders all things mightily,
to us the path of knowledge show,
and teach us in her ways to go
“Does not wisdom call, does not understanding raise her voice? On the heights beside the way, in the paths she takes her stand; beside the gates in front of the town, at the entrance of the portals she cries aloud: “To you, O men, I call, and my cry is to the sons of men. O simple ones, learn prudence; O foolish men, pay attention. Hear, for I will speak noble things, and from my lips will come what is right; for my mouth will utter truth; wickedness is an abomination to my lips. All the words of my mouth are righteous; there is nothing twisted or crooked in them. They are all straight to him who understands and right to those who find knowledge. Take my instruction instead of silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold; for wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her. I, wisdom, dwell in prudence, and I find knowledge and discretion.” Prov. 8.1-12
“…you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written, not with ink but with the Spirit of the Living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” 2 Cor. 3.3
I am God’s letter to the world, bearing His Word, His Beauty, His Truth, His Goodness, His Mercy. What a responsibility! How then should I act? Sure, I should be kind to those I meet–the cashier at the grocery, other drivers, fellow shoppers, etc. But what about those in my own home? Am I not Christ’s letter to them as well? Aren’t they the first to whom I should bring His Word, Beauty, Truth? How often, though, are they the ones who bear the brunt of my bad mood, my irritation? For me, it’s easy to put on a happy face for the few moments of interaction with the gate guard on base but much harder to be pleasant with my husband when I’m tired or stressed out. It’s easy to chit chat with the mail clerk but tortuous to listen to my children’s silliness when I am irritated.
Yes, I have a responsibility to bring Christ to the world, but it starts with the people He has put intimately into my life.