The season of Advent is the season of excitement and anticipation. What a shame when people ignore it. On the way home from the park yesterday (a great place to be on Black Friday), we saw a Christmas tree lot open and selling. A car in front of us had a Christmas tree tied to the roof. Somehow, I doubt if that family planned to light the advent wreath tomorrow. They will probably be busy decorating their Christmas tree. By the time the birth of Jesus arrives everyone will brush their hands together, put away all the ornaments, and pitch the tree out on the curb.
Not so with the savvy Catholic who lights the first candle with joy knowing that the celebration of Christmas in order to be richly enjoyed needs to be anticipated.
How long the Israelites prayed for the coming of the Messiah. How their hearts longed for a Savior. How they watched for the signs of His coming. And for the next four weeks we will experience that same longing and see it coming ever nearer as the lights on our Advent wreaths grow every week.