Read Matthew 3:1-12
“… the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire” (verse 12)
Although blue is my favourite colour, I didn’t see it in all of the paintings by the late Ottawa artist, Leonard Gerbrandt. Blue appears in all of his art. When Ute, his widow, first asked me what I thought was his favourite colour, I saw only the orange, green, red and brown.
Approaching this cold and darkening time of year, I felt unsettled because I was desiring golden sunsets, sand-packed beaches and warm coastal waters. My disquieted inner state prevented me from seeing the truth.
It was only when my gazed fixed upon a blue-dominated water colour featuring the South Saskatchewan River in winter, did Ute ask me again: “Now, do you know his favourite colour?”
I suspect we easily get distracted by things that are really not essential to who we are and what is most important to us. Not that camel’s hair, leather belts, and a diet of locusts and wild honey are irrelevant to the John the Baptist story.
And yet, what is central here is the purification that occurs in our lives. Repenting – making an about face – will result in a changed life. What is blocking that change? Is it an attitude or a long-held opinion? Is it an addiction – mental, material or chemical? Is it a lifestyle that is going nowhere? Have we been honest, and confessed these openly?
Advent waiting is a good time to take stock, and be honest. Inner peace and loving support wait on the other side.
Patient God, walk with us through the changes of our lives when we are called to be honest, and repent. Amen.