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Let's Journal Through Advent! With Lorraine Espenhain | The Seton Journaling Club

Maintaining Our Vigilance

1st Sunday of Advent

Scripture Reading: Mark 13:33-37

In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus warns us to remain watchful and alert so that when He returns, we will be ready for His arrival. He infers that each one of us has been given a specific work to be carried out for Heaven’s glory and that God fully expects us to be giving ourselves over to this work as we live out our days on the Earth. The “work” of which Jesus speaks is our threefold purpose to know Him, love Him, and serve Him in the specific vocation to which we have been called.

We are living in a world that is filled with all sorts of distractions and allurements. This is not by chance, for Satan has deliberately cast these things into the paths of men in order to keep them from seeking God and fulfilling His true purpose for their lives. In another of Jesus’ more sobering teachings, He warns that many who call themselves by His Name will not even be acknowledged by Him in the day their soul is separated from their physical bodies.

Many who call themselves Christians do not seek the Lord all week long in their lives; they seek the world. They don’t live for God; they live for the world. They call themselves Christians, but because they love the world and all that it has to offer more than they love God, they give all that is within them to the world instead of to the things of God. Instead of spending time with God in prayer, they watch television.

Instead of setting aside daily time for spiritual reading so that their soul might be nurtured and fed, they give themselves over to sports, hobbies, and other temporal things. All week long the soul is neglected while the desires and whims of the flesh are catered to. It is not possible to live like this and then think that we will be ready to stand before Christ when He comes.

We must make a deliberate and intentional choice to give ourselves over to prayer, meditation, spiritual reading, and the Sacraments if we want to maintain that state of vigilance and alertness of which Christ speaks. If we are not filling our minds up with the things of God, then we are filling them up with the things of this world. The human mind is never void. It will either be filled with one or the other.


Today is the first day of Advent. Write down in your journal exactly what you plan to do in order to maintain the state of vigilance needed in order to be ready for Christ’s arrival and to keep your spiritual focus where it needs to be. Are there things in your life which you are allowing to pull you away from those activities and disciplines which you should be doing in order to keep the fires of vigilance burning?

If so, be completely honest with yourself and with God and write them down.

You might even want to jot down the time which you intend to set aside each day during this Holy season in order to devote yourself to certain spiritual disciplines needed in order to maintain your vigilance and alertness. Below is a simple sample of what you might jot down.

Prayer 7:00 A.M. – 7:30 A.M.
Spiritual Reading 7:30 A.M. – 8:00 A.M.
Reflection/Meditation 8:00 A.M. – 8:15 A.M.

About Seton Journal Prompts

Created by Lorraine Espenhain, this Daily Journal Prompt series hopes to kickstart your creativity and promote a sense of self-discovery and wellbeing through journaling! Meet Lorraine | More about this Series
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