Monday, December 15, 2014

Gaudete Sunday!

It's taken a lot of learning, and I'm still really bad at it sometimes, but over time I have learned to trust more and more in the Lord, seeking the peace which Christ wants for us. For it is Christ who, even when we are sailing on rough seas, bids us "habete fiduciam ego sum nolite timere" (Matt 14:27).  Nolite timere, be not afraid. The Lord tells us we must habete fiduciam, have faith, because ego sum, I am - He is. 

Thus, we need not fear, no matter what troubles assail us, for He has promised us His presence - "lo, I am with you always even unto the end of the world" (Matt 28:20). For, "if God be for (us), who can be against (us)?" (Rom 9:31). With Christ by our side we need not fear the world. We need "fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul" (Matt 10:28). We need not concern ourselves with those trails and tribulations which plague this life. No matter how bad things may get, no matter how dark things may seem, yes even if we should find ourselves walking through the "valley of the shadow of death" (Ps 23:4) we know to still nolite timere as He is there with us crying out "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani - My God, My God why hast thou forsaken me." (Matt 27:46).

No, instead, we take up the challenge of Saint Paul, "gaudete in Domino semper" - rejoice in the Lord always (Phil 4:4). Rejoice. Always. Even when times are tough we are to Rejoice! Why? How? Because He is Risen! (Matt 28:6). What more cause of rejoicing do we need?

But we also are challenged another way by St. Paul, "gaudete in Domino semper" - rejoice in the Lord always. In the Lord. Even when times are good and we lose ourselves in our riches and the comforts of this world, we are to rejoice in the Lord. He is to be our center. In good times and bad. When we feel close to him and when we feel distant. Semper. Always.

These things we need to keep in mind today, Gaudete Sunday, Rejoice Sunday, and not just this Sunday, but throughout the Christmas season - indeed, throughout the year.

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