Monday, March 30, 2009

JESUS is there with us in our suffering

JESUS, I trust in YOU.

There are many thoughts and blessings swirling around within me. Come Holy Spirit and guide me - not my words, but Yours.

For those of you following this blog, what are your thoughts?
How has God been speaking to you and how have you responded?
Please comment and share your stories. They will be inspiration for others.

We are all on the same journey toward heaven, struggling along at times to do what is right, "working out our salvation with fear and trembling" (Phil 2:12).
Do we trust in Jesus?
Do we truly believe He is there with us every step of the way?
Do we comprehend His unconditional love for us?
Do we accept that love and live according to it?

Take a few minutes and gaze upon the crucifix. (if you don't have one, now is a good time to get one!) Meditate on Jesus Christ's enormous love and mercy.

As we get closer to celebrating His resurrection on Easter, let us take time to reflect on His suffering and death on the cross for us "while we were still sinners" (Romans 5:8).
We are not alone in our daily trials. Jesus is right there with us. That is why we have the crucifix front and center in the Catholic Church - as a reminder of Christ's love and sacrifice for us. Through His cross, we can find meaning and solidarity.

We don't suffer in this life because God is punishing us. We suffer because of our sinfulness. Our suffering can bear great fruit. Think of the times in your life where you have really grown in your faith. Has it been when the road has been paved with roses and everything is going your way? Or has spiritual growth occurred when the road had many potholes and there was problem after another? Remember, problems are really just miracles in disguise!

One gentleman we have come to know in the park said to me last week, "I've been high up and now I'm down low. I know God has a plan, but I wonder what he thinks of me right now."
I replied, "I don't know God's plan for you, but I do know that Jesus loves you very much right now. He loves you just as much now as He did when you had a home and a job. He always loves you, no matter what." I don't know about you, but I can't bear to see a brother or sister wondering if God loves them.

Most of us have struggled at times (and still do!) believing that our Heavenly Father loves us. He loves all of us - even those who appear to be very lost.

At Mass during the Eucharistic liturgy, the priest prays these words - "when we were lost and far from You, You loved us even more." What comfort!

For believers, it is our duty to share with others how much Jesus loves them. Ultimately, each one of us has to open the door for Him and accept His love, but He is always there knocking and waiting - loyal and faithful to the very end.

Following is a beautiful prayer that I pray each day, compliments of Mother Theresa.

Jesus is the Word made Flesh.
Jesus is the Bread of Life.
Jesus is the Victim offered for our sins on the Cross.
Jesus is the Sacrifice at Holy Mass
for the sins of the world and mine.
Jesus is the Word - to be spoken.
Jesus is the Truth - to be told.
Jesus is the Way - to be walked.
Jesus is the Light - to be lit.
Jesus is the Life - to be loved.
Jesus is the Joy - to be shared.
Jesus is the Sacrifice - to be given.
Jesus is the Bread of Life - to be eaten.
Jesus is the Hungry - to be fed.
Jesus is the Thirsty - to be satiated.
Jesus is the Naked - to be clothed.
Jesus is the Homeless - to be taken in.
Jesus is the Sick - to be healed.
Jesus is the Lonely - to be loved.
Jesus is the Unwanted - to be wanted.
Jesus is the Leper - to wash his wounds.
Jesus is the Beggar - to give him a smile.
Jesus is the Drunkard - to listen to him.
Jesus is the Little One - to embrace him.
Jesus is the Dumb - to speak to him.
Jesus is the Crippled - to walk with him.
Jesus is the Drug Addict - to befriend him.
Jesus is the Prostitute - to remove from danger and befriend her.
Jesus is the Prisoner - to be visited.
Jesus is the Old - to be served.
To me Jesus is my God,
Jesus is my Spouse,
Jesus is my Life,
Jesus is my only Love,
Jesus is my All in All,
Jesus is my Everything.

JESUS, I trust in YOU.

May the peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ reign in your heart, your mind and on your lips today and always.