Get a Life

Get a Life

BY TIM DUNN | December 11, 2023
Sunday’s Readings

By the 2nd week of Advent you should, “Get a life…a real one!” In 2013, I was privileged to hear Sr. Peggy O’Neil speak at the IFTJ. She insisted that we, “Get a life.” She said, “Go…touch those realities that are painful to see. Stare at how humane humanity is. See the real sin of whole peoples on crosses.”

I’m reminded by her passionate directive when we look at this week’s readings. Mark begins with two important statements: 1) Jesus is coming, so be ready, and 2) We must realize that we are forgiven, then accept that forgiveness. While the first week of advent highlights active waiting, the second week concentrates on making peace within yourself—we are broken and imperfect, but worthy of love and able to love others.

Get a Life

Too often we can’t “get a real life” because we are caught up in our own sin or inadequacies. Focusing on these things, we place an obstacle between us and God, resulting in a feeling of distance. This is not because God moves; it stems from us turning away from God and towards what we think might actually make us feel better. Perhaps we make fun of someone to try to feel better about ourselves. Maybe we desire the latest and greatest gadget, car, clothes, etc., to convince ourselves that we are enough.

There is no magic elixir to eliminate insecurities. The peace offered in the 2nd week requires us to reorient our lives—away from sin and towards God. The prophet Isaiah resounds God’s passionate plea to “give comfort to my people.” We must see our own agency in the world’s fight for justice and solidarity. We—flawed as we are—can make a difference in the world. So, what are you waiting for? Make room in your heart for God. Then, go “get a life…a real one!”

3 replies
  1. sonja
    sonja says:

    What are our basic needs? – food to eat, water to drink and a place to sleep. When one is focused on survival just to stay alive, many don’t have the luxury time to pray to God. Spiritual development is supposedly at the top of Maslow’s pyramid. Should we really turn Maslow’s pyramid upside down? And if we did, would the homeless disappear and the hungry be fed?
    When we are provided with food to eat, water to drink and a place to sleep, then indeed all that is necessary to live are friends and God. In a fertile land there is always food to eat, but in the deserts of our cities there is only polluted air to breathe, polluted water to drink and grovelling in dustbins for scraps of food to eat. We are not all in the privileged position of being able to live on the land and care for God’s creation.

  2. Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight
    Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight says:

    “We—flawed as we are—can make a difference in the world. So, what are you waiting for? Make room in your heart for God. Then, go “get a life…a real one!” ” In so many ways the flaws that I have help to create a platform for transfoormation of myself and the renewal of the person we are interacting with. As a teacher I am not always as fully prepared for class as I could be. I need to invite the Holy Spirit for inspiration. The interesting issue is that when myself as the flawed person asks for inspiration, the Holy Spirit is with me, guiding my thoughts and giving direction to my words. There is a sense as the Pope said recently: a ‘sobriety of words’. This sense of being with the Holy Spirit in our flaws and giving to others what our true life is and that no one else is able or willing to give that true life to others.

  3. Dr.Cajetan Coelho
    Dr.Cajetan Coelho says:

    Thanks Tim. Go “get a life…a real one!” – exciting stuff that can add life to our life span.


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