Wednesday, January 8, 2014

"The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love; It signifies Love, It produces love.”

"We become what we love and who we love shapes what we become. If we love things, we become a thing. If we love nothing, we become nothing. Imitation is not a literal mimicking of Christ, rather it means becoming the image of the beloved, an image disclosed through transformation. This means we are to become vessels of God´s compassionate love for others. “--St. Clare of Assisi

Scripture text: (1 JN 4:11-18)
Beloved, if God so loved us,
we also must love one another.
No one has ever seen God.
Yet, if we love one another, God remains in us,
and his love is brought to perfection in us.

This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us,
that he has given us of his Spirit.
Moreover, we have seen and testify
that the Father sent his Son as savior of the world.
Whoever acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God,
God remains in him and he in God.
We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us.

God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.
In this is love brought to perfection among us,
that we have confidence on the day of judgment
because as he is, so are we in this world.
There is no fear in love,
but perfect love drives out fear
because fear has to do with punishment,
and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love.

Jesus said to his apostles during the Last Supper “I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another” (John 13:34) There are different types of love but there is no confusion in the language of the New Testament.

Of course there are difficult situations where it is very demanding to love our neighbor as ourselves and our neighbor may be a family member, someone who lives near us, or who works with us.

It is only with the grace of God that we love our neighbor as ourselves in this way. It is only by living every day with Jesus that we can love as He calls us too.

“…..for without Me, you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

Much like when there is a problem of circulation we may need a bypass, a stint, or our arteries cleaned out. The same in our spiritual condition, what is blocking the Spirit’s work in us to love in the way Jesus calls us too? Now it would not necessarily be a good thing to have a bypass, because that is only avoiding dealing with the problem. A stint? Well maybe. But definitely a cleaning out, a purging of sin in our life. (Heb. 12:1).

By participating in the Sacrament of Reconciliation once a month, we not only “clear the way” for the Holy Spirit to work in our lives but Jesus himself gives us the grace to love in a way that we never thought possible.

“…..for without Me, you can do nothing.”

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