Friday of the First Week of Advent
Reflection by Chad Waggoner
|Memorial of Saint Ambrose, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
December 7, 2018
The gunners of the USS Pennsylvania, in their first moments of defense against the surprise attack at Pearl Harbor, found George Walters to being annoying. Walters was a civilian who sprung to action by manning his 50-foot tall massive rolling crane that was next to the battleship as the battle started. The civilian was using his crane to swat at the Japanese Zeros while shielding the ship from the low flying bombers. That is when the gunners realized the crane operator (who had an excellent view of the attack from the air) was not getting in the way but was being a guide for the gunners. The gunners followed his movements, so they could return fire against the Japanese with terrific precision. Walters gave the gunners a sight that they were blind to in the attack.
Both of today’s readings shared a theme of being blind but then able to see. Isaiah proclaiming that, with the Lord in our lives, we will come out of darkness and being blind we will see. Then the gospel of Matthew shares the story of Jesus healing two blind men who will celebrate their miracle.
As we go through these final days of the quarter, added with the hustle of the holidays, it is easy for us to be blind to the attacks around us:
-Stress of students trying to finalize their grades at the end of the quarter.
-Making sure our finals are ready and classroom expectations are met.
-Our commute becomes longer with the heavier use of Shelbyville Road for shoppers.
-Searching for the perfect gift for a loved one becomes a challenge.
Meanwhile it may appear like a crane keeps distracting us with thoughts of attending church, spending time in devotion and going to prayer.
But like Walters was a guide to the gunners, we have our God who is not trying to get in the way of our holidays. Rather, God is swatting at those that are trying to take us down, shielding us from spiritual distractions, and pointing us to the way of love during this Advent season.