More? There Is More?

20 Oct

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If you are not Catholic, please bear with me for a moment. If you are Catholic, hang in there.

For all of you, I hope this reflection encourages you to “go for more,” ever more in your daily prayer life.

The Resurrection of Christ

I was reflecting on the mystery of the Resurrection of Christ. How often I reflected on this great gift and mystery of the God of power and might, the God of eternal love, the God who dies and rises for our sake—and on the great reward waiting for us in our own resurrection from the dead.

But this time, I recalled that “the guards were shaken with fear and became like dead men” (Mt 28:4). Dead folks see nothing and hear nothing. This was a “death” to life and the glory of God.

Then I mused, “How often have I been “dead” before the great and wondrous God? How often have I breezed through ‘prayer’ and felt so holy? How often have I taken God’s saving love for granted?”

Once is once too many times, I realized—but I also knew that I had so often just gone through the motions of prayer. And, missed what God had in store for me.

The Ascension of Jesus

Oh, the wonder of that moment in Christian history—Jesus ascends to his Father and our Father, to his God and our God.

It is a blessing, indeed, to be caught up in that great promising moment—when we, through the passion, death, resurrection and ascension of Christ, are all destined to ascend to the throne of the Father.

Then, in my reflection, I recalled that the angel chided us for standing around looking up to heaven. I recalled the Lord’s last words to us, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teach them everything I have commanded you.”

Oh, my dear Lord, it’s so easy to look at the blessings and ignore the true Way—the way of discipleship in which we feed your hungry people, love the unlovable, embrace those too filthy and alien to embrace, and to forgive even the most unforgiveable.

The Descent of the Holy Spirit

The Christian churches have such great artwork depicting that first Christian Pentecost. It was a historic, life-giving and powerful moment—a moment the never ends because the Spirit of God dwells among us as the Lord and Giver of Life (as we pray in the Nicene Creed).

The Spirit came then—and comes today—to replace confusion with clarity, fear with courage, and indecision with commitment.

The Holy Spirit is a mysterious presence—too often ignored because of ignorance or casual faith. Yet, it is the Holy Spirit who gives the entire Church, and each one of us, the adoption by the Father in Christ Jesus.

Without the Spirit, baptismal water would just be water and the Eucharist would just be bread. Without our divine Holy Spirit, there could be no grace for leaders of his Church, no joy in salvation, no hope in the Word of the Lord.

When we do not surrender to the Holy Spirit, the entire force of Christianity is weakened and faith appears foolish or, at best, fruitless.

I’m sure, Catholic readers, that you recognize these three mysteries: the first three from Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary.

I hope this reflection helps you “go for more,” ever more, in your daily prayer life.

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