Today’s readings at the beginning of Advent shapes the context for understanding the entire season. They fix our gaze on the world of human pain and then moves beyond it to the hope of a brighter future. Lamentation and expectation find fulfilment in the Day of the Lord. Waiting is a prominent image this Sunday. The readings suggest that we should wait with patient expectation for the day of reconciliation and peace; we should wait in joyful hope that what is to come will come soon. While we wait, we should faithfully fulfil our responsibilities. We believe that we have a future worth waiting for, that there are promises that God will keep. And so we look expectantly to the Day of the Lord, that future day of ultimate fulfilment.