As we prepare for these last days before Christmas arrives, here is a meditation (paraphrased and taken) from an excerpt of Pope Francis’ words which might just help set the tone in our Advent preparation. It’s entitled “Life is Not the Same Without Jesus”:
“We have a treasure of life and love that cannot deceive, a message that cannot mislead or disappoint. It penetrates to the depths of our hearts sustaining and enabling us. But this conviction has to be sustained by our own constant renewal….we know well that with Jesus, our life becomes richer and that with him it is easier to find meaning in everything. This is why we evangelize.
A true missionary never ceases to be a disciple, knowing that Jesus walks with him, speaks to him, breathes with him, works with him. He senses Jesus alive with him in the midst of every enterprise. Unless we see him present at the heart of our commitments and our enthusiasm for anything, soon wanes and we are no longer sure of what it is that we are hanging onto. A person who is not convinced, enthusiastic, certain and in love will convince no one.” (Pope Francis I)
Christmas is a wonderful time to be reminded and truly connected with our greatest treasure: the gift of God’s Son in Jesus Christ! The birth of our Lord changes our life, because it brings with it true meaning and purpose to us. It not only reminds us of God’s unconditional love given in a little child who knows neither hatred or fear, but it reminds us that our life is much larger than what first meets the eye. We are part of a much greater plan, an eternal plan and destiny with God! We are also not alone for God is with us to give us new life and direction (and ultimately) peace!
So, to you and your loved ones, I encourage you to be part of us, to take part in our Christmas Liturgies and allow God’s voice to speak to you in our celebrations. Allow God to be an ever greater part of your life! For, as Pope Francis says, “Life is not the same without Jesus.”
Here’s to a safe and Merry Christmas for everyone!