God Chooses the Weak – Tuesday of the First Week of Advent

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Tuesday of the First Week of Advent 


Memorial of Saint Francis Xavier


Luke 10:21-24

Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, “I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.” Turning to the disciples in private he said, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I say to you, 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.”


Opening Prayer: Lord, I believe in your abiding presence, I hope in your boundless mercy, and I love you for who you are. Strengthen my faith, hope, and love all the same, Lord, for you know how weak I am. Lord, grant me a spirit of humility and simplicity.


Encountering Christ:


  1. God Chooses the Weak: If we read the passages in Saint Luke’s Gospel that immediately precede this speech of Our Lord’s (Luke 10:1-13, 17-20), we see that Our Lord has gathered together seventy-two of his disciples, sending them out to preach repentance for the coming Kingdom. He sends them out with nothing—no sack, no money bag, not even sandals. He wants them to rely on his strength, not their own. They experience great success as a result—“Lord, even the demons are subject to us because of your name…” (Luke 10:17). No matter how weak or unprepared we think we are, with Jesus we have everything we need to accomplish whatever he asks us to do.
  2. Being One of the “Weak”: In our daily walk in the spiritual life, and in our apostolic endeavors, we can experience our weakness in many ways. These experiences can leave us frustrated, confused, and a little discouraged if we lose sight of who has sent us out and is walking with us. Bringing our weaknesses to God in prayer can feel like a “self-emptying” before God, deposing ourselves as ruler of our hearts. Once we do so, however, Christ reigns anew in us, and we are empowered to truly carry out his mission with confidence, having been reminded that, in the end, the mission doesn’t depend on us, but rather on he who sent us.
  3. Christ’s Joy: Our Lord rejoices when the Father makes his power manifest to his childlike disciples, those who are simple enough to embrace the fullness of Jesus’s Gospel message. We can sometimes frustrate ourselves by overcomplicating the demands of the Christian life. Where in my own life do I need to renew my commitment to Christ with childlike simplicity?


Conversing with Christ: Lord, you know how weak I am. As I prepare my heart for your coming this Christmas, teach me to recognize my weakness so as to live in the truth. Be the king of my heart, Lord Jesus.


Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will take special note of any feelings of frustration or discouragement and remind myself that you walk alongside me. 


For Further Reflection: Listen to this Audrey Assad hymn Abide with Me. A sample: …Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be? Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me. I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless; Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness…


Br. Brian Flanagan, LC, is a seminarian studying classical humanities with the Legionaries of Christ in Cheshire, Connecticut. He is from Atlanta, Georgia, and has been in the Legion since 2016. He can be contacted at bflanagan@legionaries.org


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