Advent Reflections 2023: Day 2

2 December   Isaiah 64:1-9

When I reflect on this passage from Isaiah, it seems to me it’s all about wanting to hear God and to feel God’s presence in the rumbling of the mountains and the shaking of the earth. The feeling that he is physically with us, even if that feeling comes out of his anger at the way we are living our lives. But deeper than that it is also, for me, about letting go of our sins and cleansing ourselves – with God’s help, of course.

This passage makes me think that we are considering ourselves too sinful to be saved because we keep hold of the bad things we do, and we feel God is too angry with us to help us. But is that God’s anger or our own interpretation of how we think God should feel because of what we are doing? Because in the next breath we are reminded that we are made and moulded by God, his creation, made with love and purpose to be a guiding light for good for others on this earth.

For me this passage is an impassioned appeal for God to look favourably on the creation he made and free us from our sins. Of course, the passage talks about Israel, but it so easily applies to all of us. How often do we cling onto things that we should let go of and how much better do we feel when we do let go?

We do need to reflect and ask ourselves why we cling on so tightly to that which tarnishes us and in doing so begin a cycle of dull repetition of self-loathing and doubt. We need to learn to let go and be cleansed in God’s love, and in turn love and forgive others in his name.

Pamela Sewart

Loving Lord,

Help us to let go of all our sins which clutter up our lives

and tarnish our souls. Help us to let go and to allow ourselves

to be cleansed in you, that you might make us bright again

to shine as a light in the darkness of this current world. Amen.