As our society becomes more and more mobile, the primary image from today's readings becomes ever more necessary— the Rock.
In the first reading Isiaiah instructs us:
Trust in the LORD forever! For the LORD is an eternal Rock.
And in the gospel Jesus instructs about the house built on Rock.
In our modern world where we can easily live hundreds if not thousands of mile away from family and even our close friends, we are reminded of the need to maintain a solid foundation in our lives. Like the image of the wellsprings, this foundation is not something external but internal, spiritual.
God does not change, God is that eternal unmoving rock. Unfortunately we can and do move. Sometimes we intentionally move and sometimes it is just a case of unintentional drift. Often we don't even notice until one day we look down and there is either sand, or even quicksand under us, and then we panic.
The readings remind us that we need to make a part of our daily lives to look down and check our footing. We must stay firmly planted on the Rock. This does not mean that we should be intransigent.
When we are standing still with our feet firmly planted on the rock we call earth, it is rotating at over 1000 mph, and orbiting the sun at over 67,000 miles per hour. We are in motion even when we think we aren't.
Change and motion are both constant and inevitable. Change is good. It is how God created us to be. But we need both and anchor and a destination.
Look at the things you are doing today. Where are you standing? Where are you going?
And, by the way, don't forget to put out the shoes.
Tomorrow is St. Nicholas.