The Scripture passages in Advent liturgies often remind us to stay awake and be watchful. This past Sunday we heard John the Baptist proclaiming that we must straighten paths and make rough ways smooth to prepare for the coming of God in our lives. Advent is a time to be especially watchful for God who often “shows up” at the most unexpected times and places! We all have crooked paths and rough ways that hinder our ability to notice God’s coming into our lives. They may take the form of addictions, negative attitudes, extreme busyness, an unforgiving spirit or even a lack of self-acceptance. The good news is that God takes the initiative to level the way and smooth the path for us. We need only to be awake and watchful, always ready to welcome the presence of God in all the ordinary moments of our daily lives.