and straighten his ways, that is, to place ourselves in that spiritual state which makes us deeply scrutinize our life and our actions in the light of faith, hope. and love, even if we walk the way that Jesus, the incarnate Lord, deigned and humbled himself, even death on the cross for our salvation.
Before Christ, we cannot stand by and watch, and we cannot fail to correct our behavior and correct our attitudes to reflect the Gospel message that we must bring to the world. For this reason the Church places the image of the saint before us today in the liturgy
The Baptist is that voice that cries out in the desert to accompany us on our journey of conversion, to listen to the voice of God again despite the noise of the world around us.
This Sunday's Gospel makes us touch the message of Advent, boldly proclaimed by John the Baptist. John is the true example of holiness and fidelity, repentance, courage and humility, the foundation of every true path towards Christmas.
With humility, that is, by recognizing that we are not worthy to bow down to undo the shoelaces of Jesus, our journey towards salvation begins. Recognizing ourselves as sinners, as His Holiness Pope Francis always reminds us, is for us the first step on our journey towards holiness, because whoever does not recognize his weakness and his need for conversion and salvation is vacant and cannot welcome the Lord because he is full of himself. We too, despite our intentions to follow the Lord Jesus, experience pride and hardness of heart every day. But when we confess that we are sinners, the Lord fills us with his mercy and love. He always forgives us. This is what makes us grow as God's people AND a church: it is not our ability or our merits - because we are nothing - but the daily experience of how much God loves and cares for us and expects us.