“’Stirring up our lives’ to savour the sweetness of joy, peace and serenity of the Lord!”
(Based on Acts 15:7-21 and Jn 15:9-11 – Thursday of the 5th Week in Easter)
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
THE CELEBRANTS OF THE HEAVENLY AND SACRAMENTAL LITURGY
It is in this eternal liturgy that the Spirit and the Church enable us to participate whenever we celebrate the mystery of salvation in the sacraments.
It is the whole community, the Body of Christ united with its Head, that celebrates.
“Liturgical services are not private functions but are celebrations of the Church which is ‘the sacrament of unity,’ namely, the holy people united and organized under the authority of the bishops.
Therefore, liturgical services pertain to the whole Body of the Church.
They manifest it, and have effects upon it.
But they touch individual members of the Church in different ways, depending on their orders, their role in the liturgical services, and their actual participation in them.”
For this reason, “rites which are meant to be celebrated in common, with the faithful present and actively participating, should as far as possible be celebrated in that way rather than by an individual and quasi-privately.”
The celebrating assembly is the community of the baptized who, “by regeneration and the anointing of the Holy Spirit, are consecrated to be a spiritual house and a holy priesthood, that… they may offer spiritual sacrifices.”
This “common priesthood” is that of Christ the sole priest, in which all his members participate: Mother Church earnestly desires that all the faithful should be led to that full, conscious, and active participation in liturgical celebrations which is demanded by the very nature of the liturgy…
… and to which the Christian people, “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a redeemed people,” have a right and an obligation by reason of their Baptism. (CCC #1139-1141)