REFLECTION: Welcome each day with gladness PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 04 December 2014 14:04

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

 

We have every reason to welcome each day with gladness, regardless of how our condition may be physically, mentally, emotionally. And that’s because God is always good, and his love and mercy never end.

No sin nor stupidity of ours can change that. It’s not him who will condemn us, if ever we get condemned. It’s us. We need to train ourselves to always have a positive outlook in life, to be hopeful and optimistic, in spite of whatever. As far as God is concerned, he has given us everything we need to be like him, happy, full of love and goodness.

We have to look at this matter first of all within the framework of the over-all plan of God when he decided to create us and the rest of the universe. Truth is we have all been created out of love, out of sheer goodness on the part of God who did not have any need to create anything or anyone. He just wanted to share what he has with us.

In short, the whole of creation has been generated out of love and is meant for love. With God’s omnipotent providence, it will remain in a state of love. As his image and likeness, we are supposed to reflect that love and goodness in our life, in our attitude toward him and everybody and everything else.

Even if we abused his goodness and fell into sin, God continues to love us. He will re-create us, heal us, redeem us as he actually has done and continues to do. He will forgive us always, just as he in Christ has commanded us—“not only seven times, but seventy times seven.”

Let’s listen to what Christ has to say about this: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God sent the Son into the world not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.” (Jn 3,16-17)

It’s truly worthwhile to engrave these precious and reassuring words in our mind and heart. Since we cannot help but abuse the goodness of God, and so get our just deserts by suffering some forms of sadness, shame, pain and the like, we should always remember that God will continue to love us.

This has been proven by the fact that Christ died for us. He assumed our sins. His love for us is not self-seeking (eros), nor a matter of sharing (filia). He goes beyond, to the point of giving himself to us even if his love is not corresponded properly (agape).

St. Paul explains it plainly in this way: “God shows his love for us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.” (Rom 5,8)

This is the irrefutable basis for our joy and confidence in life, in our attitude towards anything, in spite of whatever mistakes, sins, miseries we may have. We need to train ourselves always to have a joyful, hopeful outlook in life.

It would not be good if we allow ourselves to be dominated by fear, worry, anger, doubts, sadness, etc., just because of our problems, difficulties, or worse, our sins and mistakes.

Yes, we have to learn to face them, solve and resolve them the best way we can. And yet even in the worst scenario when we encounter situations of insoluble predicaments, we still have reason to be joyful and at peace, because Christ has assumed all our troubles on the cross.

We need to learn how to be sport in life, how to move on in spite of setbacks, how not to get stuck in our failures and disappointments and to rot there. If we look at our predicaments the way Christ looks at them, it would not be hypocrisy if we strive to smile even if our heart is burdened with something. That would be heroic sanctity.

In the face of our abuses, Christ simply preaches what is right. He may correct, or sometimes scold as he did to Peter. But he does not prevent us from exercising our freedom, no matter how wrongly we use it. He simply drowns evil with an abundance of good, to the extreme of offering his life on the cross.

This is how we can be joyful and at peace all the time. Yes, we may suffer, but it’s a suffering that does not take away our joy and peace. And so we can afford to welcome each day with gladness, no matter how that day goes.