Thursday, February 2, 2012

Patience with others is Love, Patience with self is Hope, Patience with God is Faith

True patience grows with the growth of love. We put up with our neighbors to the extent that we love them. If you love, you are patient. If you cease loving, you will cease being patient. The less we love, the less patience we show. - St. Gregory the Great : Pope and Doctor of the Church

(Lk 2:22-32)
When the days were completed for their purification
according to the law of Moses,
Mary and Joseph took Jesus up to Jerusalem
to present him to the Lord,
just as it is written in the law of the Lord,
Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord,
and to offer the sacrifice of
a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons,
in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord.

Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon.
This man was righteous and devout,
awaiting the consolation of Israel,
and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit
that he should not see death
before he had seen the Christ of the Lord.
He came in the Spirit into the temple;
and when the parents brought in the child Jesus
to perform the custom of the law in regard to him,
he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying:

"Now, Master, you may let your servant go
in peace, according to your word,
for my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you prepared in the sight of all the peoples:
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and glory for your people Israel."

Today the Church celebrates the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple at Jerusalem. In that same spirit, we present ourselves today to the Lord, especially in the Mass.

I recently saw an advertisement for a bride's camp. This was a service for brides who had only a few months left before their wedding day. The "camp" involved a feverish workout, nutrition, and beauty regimen designed to put the bride in the best possible shape for her wedding day. The idea is to make her "presentable" in the best possible way.

Our presentation of ourselves to God involves much more than the above example. Jesus says: "No one who comes [to Me] will I ever reject" (Jn 6:37). Jesus became like you so that you would always know in the depths of your heart that you can "approach God through Him" (Heb 7:25; Eph 2:18). Present yourself to Jesus today, just as you are. Receive His life-giving love.

Re-read the words of the gospel narrative as it concludes:
Stretching his arms Simeon takes the Infant from his Mother and praises God while saying: «Now, O Lord, you can dismiss your servant in peace, for you have fulfilled your word and my eyes have seen your salvation, which you display for all the people to see. Here is the light you will reveal to the nations and the glory of your people Israel» (Lk 2:29-32).

You are invited to do the same.

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