A special thank you this week to our friends from St. Joseph’s, Downers Grove; St. Louise de Marillac, LaGrange Park; Divine Providence, Westchester; St. Joseph’s, Libertyville in the congregation.

Fourth Sunday of Advent

Jesus has a lot of titles, or a lot of names. We’ll call him the son of God, we’ll call him the son of man, he’s a king, he’s a friend. But the title of lord is to me one of the more interesting provocative titles. Jesus is the lord. Now we say this all the time in our prayers, and we say it, and we read it constantly in scripture, and it’s a title that I think is worth reflecting upon because it’s somewhat archaic, and we don’t say it a lot. You wouldn’t call your boss at work lord, or a son wouldn’t call his father lord, you wouldn’t call your pastor lord, at least I hope you wouldn’t.

But lord is something we call Jesus, and Jesus always is our most intimate friend, he’s our intimate lover. So why do we call him lord and what does that mean? What’s unique about calling Jesus lord, different than what a lord was referred to in the middle ages, is that Jesus is a lord who wants to work for us. Now in the middle ages, or even if you were to use lord today, even though you probably wouldn’t, it would mean you were working for the lord. You owe the lord something, you owe him your service, and maybe even some money. Service is given to the lord, but not with Jesus, it’s the opposite. He is the lord who serves us.

Now, we see this constantly, this kind of flipping of the lord on its head in the bible. And it starts in our first reading with King David. Now King David is referring to Jesus and to God the father as a lord. Now what does God do for King David? He serves him. He says “No, you are not going to build a house for me David, I am going to build a house for you. And it’s your ancestry, the line of David, through which my son, the savior of the world, will come up.” So even though David is calling God the father lord, God the father serves David.

And then our blessed mother, this great line in her Gospel of Luke this morning. “Behold, I am the handmade of the lord. Be done unto me according to thy word.” Mary is the handmade of the lord, and again, it’s our lord, Jesus, who serves Mary. She will conceive God himself, she will be our blessed mother. All graces will flow through her. She will be such a beacon of light to the world, God will bless her, even though God is lord.

And so brothers and sisters, just please know this that Jesus is ultimately our lord, he is your lord. And that means that he wants to serve you, he wants to bless you, he wants to love you, like he did with David and with the blessed mother. And so I hope you can experience the lord during this final day in the season of advent. Amen.