Today’s readings are bursting with excited anticipation. I’m sure many of us could do with a bit of that!
While the joyful messenger (First Reading Isaiah 40:1-5,9-11) undoubtedly prefigures John the Baptist (Mark 1;1-8) he (or she!) also represents the call of every Christian. We’re to be like joyful messengers going up on a high mountain (where you can see for miles – kilometres) and we’re to shout with a loud voice. In other words; tell everyone, tell the whole world. Tell them what? Our God comes. This is the joy of Catholicism – God in Jesus has travelled the miles, and continues to travel the miles, that great divide between you and God, me and God. So get ready; prepare a way for the Lord!
The ‘space’ that exists between you and God is like a wilderness – put a way for the Lord in that wilderness.
That space between you and God is like a desert – put a highway for the Lord right there in the desert!
That space is like a valley, fill in the valley!
That space between you and God is like a hill, perhaps even a mountain, tear it down and lay it low!
That space is like a cliff, make it into a plain!
Do it and you’ll see the glory of the Lord, as today’s Entrance Antiphon says “…the Lord will make the glory of his voice heard in the joy of your heart” (Cf. Is 30: 19, 30).
Then you’ll have something to shout about! Indeed, “Shout with a loud voice joyful messenger…”