“’Stirring up our lives’ to savour the sweetness of joy, peace and serenity, by obeying God’s commandments”
(Based on Acts 15:7-21 and Jn 15:9-11 – Thursday of 5th Week in Eastertide)
One of the wonderful SMS’s that has been read and circulated by many of us, goes thus….
“Life is like having a cup of coffee…
You sit by the window, lift the cup, take a careless sip…
… and find no sugar.
Too lazy to go for the sugar, you somehow manage with that sugarless cup.
On finishing, you find undissolved sugar crystals, settled at the bottom!
That is life!
We don’t make any effort to value what is around or within us.
So look around… Maybe, the sweetness you are looking is much closer than you think!”
How often is our spiritual life also lived similarly…
We go through the rigours of spiritual practices…
… but they sometimes become mere routines
We perform many chores of religious exercises…
… but they sometimes turn out to be ritualistic.
Spiritual life becomes tasteless…
Spiritual life loses its fascination…
But Jesus, in the Gospel of the Day invites us to have a deeper excitement and happiness in life, by abiding in His love.
He tells us, “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy maybe in you, and that your joy may be full” (Jn 15: 11)
The Lord wishes each of His follower to live a life of immense joy and happiness.
Jesus, Himself lived a very joyful life.
What was the recipe of His happiness?
A life that was lived in perfect communion with His Heavenly Father…
… seeking union with the Father through moments of solitude in prayer
… raising His Heart to the Father in gratitude and thanksgiving at every situation of life.
A life that was lived in absolute obedience to the Will of His Father…
… willing to shed any personal comforts or desires to be faithful to the mission entrusted
… readiness to undergo any amount of pain and suffering, even death, to be totally committed
Jesus hands over this same recipe to us, to discover true joy and happiness in life.
When we seek to live in Communion with the Heavenly Father…
… in intense moments of prayer
… with a heart of thanksgiving
And we seek to being obedient to God’s Will…
… even at the cost of some personal comforts
… ready to bear sufferings to be faithful to Him
It is then…
… that we will experience real joy and happiness
… that we will treasure heavenly experiences in our hearts
Life grinds us through many tasteless moments and situations…
We get upset easily…
We tend to get defensive…
We get into a mode of being lethargic…
But the Lord says… “Stir up your lives!”
“Stir up your lives” to savour the sweetness of joy, peace and serenity…
… to taste the joy that is guaranteed by obeying God’s commandments
… to taste the peace that is assured by letting our lives be symphony of service to others
… to taste the serenity that is promised by always abiding in the loving presence of the Lord
God Bless! Live Jesus!
Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism:
“God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them.”
Man occupies a unique place in creation:
… he is “in the image of God”
… in his own nature, he unites the spiritual and material worlds
… he is created “male and female”;
… God established him in his friendship.
Of all visible creatures only man is “able to know and love his creator”.
He is “the only creature on earth that God has willed for its own sake”…
… and he alone is called to share, by knowledge and love, in God’s own life.
It was for this end that he was created, and this is the fundamental reason for his dignity:
What made you establish man in so great a dignity? Certainly the incalculable love by which you have looked on your creature in yourself! You are taken with love for her; for by love indeed you created her, by love you have given her a being capable of tasting your eternal Good.
Being in the image of God the human individual possesses the dignity of a person, who is not just something, but someone.
He is capable of self-knowledge, of self-possession and of freely giving himself and entering into communion with other persons…