obedience: the road to love
"Whoever keeps His word, truly has the love of God been made perfect in him." —1 John 2:5
The purpose of the Christmas season is to grow greatly in love for Jesus. To grow in love requires God's grace, our willingness to accept His grace, and a process by which we are transformed and made more capable of loving. We go through this process of transformation by taking step after step in obedience. "By obedience to the truth" we purify ourselves "for a genuine love" (1 Pt 1:22). "The way we can be sure of our knowledge of Him is to keep His commandments" (1 Jn 2:3).
By obedience, Mary conceived Christ and loved Him more deeply than anyone has ever loved Him. By obedience, Joseph became the foster-father of Jesus and grew from love to love. By obedience, the shepherds and wise men saw the infant Jesus and began a new life of love forever. By obedience, Simeon "came to the temple" (Lk 2:27) where he met Jesus, the Light to the Gentiles, the Glory of Israel (Lk 2:32), and the God Who is Love (1 Jn 4:16).
Christmas is a journey into "the breadth and length and height and depth of Christ's love" (Eph 3:18). We do not know the way, but Jesus, the Way (Jn 14:6), will tell us each step to take. Obey Love on the road to love.
Prayer: Abba, lead me to love with a martyr's love.
Promise: "This Child is destined to be the downfall and the rise of many in Israel, a sign that will be opposed — and you yourself shall be pierced with a sword — so that the thoughts of many hearts may be laid bare." —Lk 2:34-35
Praise: King Henry II was moved to do public penance for the part he played in the death of St. Thomas.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 21, 1999
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1999