"Be vigilant at all times," Jesus tells us on this First Sunday of Advent. Perhaps one good reason that he so urgently exhorts us to be attentive is that the mode of his approach is most often so unassuming, ordinary, unremarkable, and almost forgettable. We need to keep alert or we’ll miss out. The hour is now, God’s time is now. But we must be aware that his coming, his advent toward us is usually in silence and obscurity. Hidden first of all in the warm womb of a pregnant virgin mother, he then lives a hidden small town life as a carpenter and wandering preacher. Then in the excruciating hour of his death on the cross, all his beauty and power will be hidden, smeared and obscured by the blood and spittle and scorn of his passion. And finally even in his joyous resurrected return to his disciples; he will sneak in through locked doors to whisper, “Peace” and to ask quietly for something to eat.