“Chocolate Chip Cookies”, by Jessica Leguizamon, Fiat Ventures

Second Sunday of Advent

Have you ever baked chocolate chip cookies? I’m sure you’ve at least eaten them if you haven’t! I bet you could even come up with a basic ingredient list off the top of your head, and you might even be able to guess at a good temperature to preheat the oven. Especially if you’ve ever baked cookies with little kids, you know that it can be MESSY. Let’s say you’re at a Christmas party, and your grandmother walks into the living room with a plate of perfect cookies, fresh out of the oven. It might look like a scene straight out of a Nestle ad. But what you didn’t see, was that she made those cookies with your little toddler cousins, and the kitchen currently looks like a post-apocalyptic landscape, and your cousins are sitting on the floor covered in flour and licking spoons. Still, despite the mess, your grandmother was able to deliver, and she made something amazing come from the mess.

In this week’s readings, God basically does this – not with cookies, but with people! In the first reading from the prophet Baruch, God’s people are still in captivity in Babylon, in the midst of their post-apocalyptic flour mess as it were. But God promises that one day he’s going to bring his people back to Jerusalem! He’s going to make something good and amazing come out of this situation. Just as your grandmother brought the cookies out, perfectly presented on a fancy plate, God will bring his people back “borne aloft in glory as on royal thrones.” God will remove any obstacles in the way, making every mountain low and gorges filled to level ground. And as in the Psalm response this week, the people will say “The Lord has done great things for us; we are filled with joy!”

How many times have you gone day after day feeling stressed and overwhelmed with what life has been throwing your way? I know I can say too many to count. Life will never go the way you expect it to, that’s why God offers us support. We are the dough in this cookie analogy; and the stress and difficulties in our lives become the right preheating temperature to bake the perfect cookie. God’s scripture and guidance in prayer are the recipe that help bake us into the best versions of ourselves and the best chocolate chip cookies we can be. And then God brings us out on a fancy plate; “…God means to show your splendor to every nation under heaven.” God wants you to be the most dazzling chocolate chip cookie, fudgy, warm and perfectly baked with his love, care, and special ingredients. 

Even when life seems to throw spontaneity and inconsistency, when there’s stress and overwhelming emotions from responsibilities and obligations, know one thing, you are made to be the most perfect amazing version of yourself through the help of our Lord. Just like how the ingredients to a cookie are essential to its making, so is God’s presence in our lives. 

Your challenge for this week, let God pave the way. Seek his guidance and let him lead you. When times get too complicated or filled with anxieties about your day, go back to scripture, where God explains his plans for you, because you are not here by mistake and you are made to be an excellent chocolate-chip-cookie-person. 

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