TOROK: A season of hope, prayer for families

December 14, 2021

Advent is the season of hope in the Lord; the first candle of our Advent wreath is themed with hope. Our hope is in the Lord; we believe He is our Redeemer and will come again to save us. Advent is a time to prepare ourselves for His coming. During this season, we pray and reflect on how to be the best person we can be to prepare for the day we meet Christ in His second coming. Perhaps for adults with a mature faith, this is an easy concept. But how do parents help build this faith and understanding in their families?

A family activity that can lead to preparation for Advent is to discuss each other’s dreams.

A person with a dream aspires and hopes to accomplish something. A few questions to discuss in family could be: What are your dreams? Why do you believe that to be important? Who will that serve? How will your faith in God help you accomplish your dream? Have you thought about asking God to help you with your hopes and dreams?

This family discussion may lend toward an understanding of how we can be people in waiting for Christ’s coming. It might lend an understanding that when we talk to God and strive to improve ourselves for Christ, we are preparing ourselves to be ready for Christ’s second coming.

Another family discussion point might be that we should strive to stand firm in faith and hope even when it looks like we did not get what we wanted or prayed for. It is wonderful to know that God wants more for us than we know or dare to ask for ourselves. God always provides a better way for us than we ever expected. God is all-powerful. God will use our mishaps for our betterment if we wait and believe.

Advent prayer can lead to repentance in our lives. Prayer draws us closer to God. Making us more aware of the goodness and need to change for the good. The action of prayer is God’s invitation for us to grow closer to His light.

The more we pray, the more we grow in our desire to be with Him. Family prayer may be as simple as calling everyone together at mealtime. Invite everyone to offer something they are grateful for.

Finally, a family can conclude their prayer with “Come Lord Jesus.”

If family prayer is to simply sit together and pray the phrase “Come Lord Jesus” and then offer a brief time of silence for prayers in their hearts, how blessed is a beloved family to have spent time with the Savior, longing for his coming.

Come Lord Jesus! 

Norma Torok is a former associate director of the Office of Adolescent Catechesis and Evangelization.