Friday, December 25, 2020

Courage to be Born Again

A religious sister in the field of spirituality writes in the Kyeongyang magazine on the courage to be born again.

We are coming to the end of the year 2020, a year in which all was confused. Plans and people she was to meet never happened. Corona 19 screwed up everything, something she couldn't even imagine at the beginning of the year. She finally arrived at a time when a certain amount of order came into her life and the year is practically ended.

The liturgical year however, is here again to give us hope and consolation. We just celebrated the 4th week of Advent, consoled by hope to humanity that the child Jesus in the manager brought to us.

A few days before, Sister received a telephone call from a woman: "Sister can an old person like myself make a retreat?" She was 83 years old but no indication of this from her voice. "Sister, I have been alone after the death of my husband 4 years ago. My children have all married and live in other parts of the country. I am living each day in preparation to meet our Lord. My only wish is to grow old with grace and meaning." Elizabeth was a reader of the Kyeongyang magazine and her words moved Sister greatly.

We all experience ups and downs in life. Each person wants to live an upright life. Does not Elizabeth have the desire to be born again?
Sister mentions a French poem: 'dare to be born again'—Oser naitre. Not the outer person but the desire of the inner person to be born again. We easily think that the person we were yesterday is who we are today but that is not the case. If one realizes this reality they are born again. When one does not experience a love that was not expected yesterday but does today that person is born again.

"Believing means entrusting oneself to a merciful love which always accepts and pardons, which sustains and directs our lives, and which shows its power by its ability to make straight the crooked lines of our history. Faith consists in the willingness to let ourselves be constantly transformed and renewed by God’s call. Herein lies the paradox: by constantly turning towards the Lord, we discover a sure path which liberates us from the dissolution imposed upon us by idols" (Pope Francis Encyclical Lumen Fidei #13).

Today we will celebrate Christmas. Each year at this time the Church gives thanks to God for the gift of Jesus that gives us the faith to live fully the gift of life. Jesus gives us the reason to open ourselves up to be born again daily to new life. Merry Christmas!

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