Have you been asking God the wrong question?

| Deacon Brandon Moravitz | November 22, 2011 | 0 Comments

A few weekends ago, I was enjoying a quiet evening at the seminary, when suddenly I received a flood of text messages from family and friends sharing with me their excitement of “bagging” a deer on opening day of the deer hunting season.

I found myself being both excited for my family and friends, yet also a bit frustrated with each message I received. I began saying to the Lord, “Why can’t I be out in the woods hunting?”

“Why do I have to be stuck here at the seminary during opening weekend of deer hunting?”

Have you ever found yourself asking those dangerous “why” questions?

Why do those neighbors have to be so loud and keep their yard such a mess?

Why do I have to live in Minnesota where it snows for nine months of the year?

Why does a loved one have to have cancer or some other life-threatening disease?

Why do the horrific things that are going on at Penn State happen?

Why? Why? Why?

It is quite normal to ask those sorts of questions throughout our day. Yet, all the “why” questions can be a bit dangerous, because they can potentially lead us down a path that loses sight of the kingdom of God, which is always in our midst, and the kingdom of God that is to come.

Instead, we may want to consider asking “where” whenever we find ourselves asking “why.”

Where are you God in the midst of my not being able to be out hunting opening weekend?

Where are you God in the midst of my neighbors driving me crazy?

Where are you God in the midst of the cold, long, winter days of February?

Where are you God in the midst of losing a loved one to disease or tragedy?

Where are you God in the midst of the disaster at Penn State?

The “where” questions force us to look for the kingdom of God which is always in the midst of tragedy, joys and the ordinary events of our lives.

Advent calls for searching

It seems this is what we are called to each and every Advent season.

To search for the Christ child who is in our midst, and to be vigilant about preparing ourselves for his coming again.

So as we light the first candle of our Advent wreaths this weekend, let us take very seriously the words of Jesus in this weekend’s Gospel: to “be watchful” and to “be alert.” We are called to be watchful and alert for Christ, who is always in our midst and who is to come again at the end of time.

It is possible that — if we begin to ask “where” this Advent season — we might bring to life the beautiful words of the psalmist who writes, “Lord, make us turn to you; let us see your face and we shall be saved.”

Deacon Brandon Moravitz is in formation for the priesthood at The St. Paul Seminary for the Diocese of Duluth. His home parish is St. Anthony in Ely and his teaching parish is Immaculate Conception in Pine City.

 


Readings

First Sunday in Advent
• Isaiah 63:16b-17, 19b; 64:2-7
• 1 Corinthians 1:3-9
• Mark 13:33-37

For reflection

In the coming week, keep track of  how often you ask God why, instead of looking for where Christ is and
has been in your life.

Category: Featured, Sunday Scriptures