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The Last Hour

First Reading: 1 John 2:18-21

Children, it is the last hour;
and just as you heard that the antichrist was coming,
so now many antichrists have appeared.
Thus we know this is the last hour.
They went out from us, but they were not really of our number;
if they had been, they would have remained with us.
Their desertion shows that none of them was of our number.
But you have the anointing that comes from the Holy One,
and you all have knowledge.
I write to you not because you do not know the truth
but because you do, and because every lie is alien to the truth.

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 96:1-2, 11-12, 13

R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Sing to the LORD; bless his name;
announce his salvation, day after day.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice;
let the sea and what fills it resound;
let the plains be joyful and all that is in them!
Then shall all the trees of the forest exult before the LORD.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!
The LORD comes,
he comes to rule the earth.
He shall rule the world with justice
and the peoples with his constancy.
R. Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice!

Gospel: John 1:1-18

In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God.
All things came to be through him,
and without him nothing came to be.
What came to be through him was life,
and this life was the light of the human race;
the light shines in the darkness,
and the darkness has not overcome it.

A man named John was sent from God.
He came for testimony, to testify to the light,
so that all might believe through him.
He was not the light,
but came to testify to the light.
The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

He was in the world,
and the world came to be through him,
but the world did not know him.
He came to what was his own,
but his own people did not accept him.

But to those who did accept him
he gave power to become children of God,
to those who believe in his name,
who were born not by natural generation
nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision
but of God.

And the Word became flesh
and made his dwelling among us,
and we saw his glory,
the glory as of the Father’s only-begotten Son,
full of grace and truth.

John testified to him and cried out, saying,
“This was he of whom I said,
‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me
because he existed before me.’”
From his fullness we have all received,
grace in place of grace,
because while the law was given through Moses,
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
No one has ever seen God.
The only-begotten Son, God, who is at the Father’s side,
has revealed him.

NAB

dec 31

Children, it is the last hour.

I’ve always wanted to be among the sea of humanity pressed shoulder to shoulder in Times Square on this night, layered in festive scarves and wool hats and puffy coats, squinting up into the sky to catch the very first glimpse of the New Year as it comes in.

The last hour . . . the last minutes . . . the final seconds, as everyone breathes together, counting down the waning moments of a year lived, eager to taste the first air that belongs to a year yet unseen.

What will it bring? Will it be better than the one we are leaving behind? Whether we sailed through this year with a tailwind or struggled hard against it, whether we wrestled it to the ground as it drew to a close or lowered our heads in defeat, we know one thing.

The same Word that was in the beginning is in every beginning.

The Word (the very Word that was with God and was God!) became flesh and made His dwelling among us. That Word, that God-with-us, is still with us. He goes before us, the way He always has. And from His fullness we have all received grace in place of grace.

The new year stretches out ahead of us as we hold our breaths, waiting to see what it will bring . . . but no matter what it brings, we know He is already there.

Happy New Year, sisters. May God’s richest blessings fill your hearts with joy in the 365 days to come . . . and in the moments when you fear and struggle and wonder if you can go on, know that you can. You can and you will, because grace and truth came to us through Jesus Christ that first Christmas, and they never left us. You are enough, because He is enough for you, no matter what lies ahead for you this year.

As you lay the past year to rest and look over its triumphs and disappointments, picture Jesus standing beside you, loving you just as you are. No matter how the last year went, you are enough. No matter what comes for you this year, you are enough . . . and Jesus is enough for you. 

Abbey Dupuy is a homeschooling mama to preschooler twins, a first grader, and a new baby. You can find out more about her here.

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