The Joy of the Gospel

Whenever I see a nun at a conference, at mass or just anywhere, I instantly realize that they have something uniquely different from me. The thing that they have is intriguing, for I know that I want whatever they have! What they have is authentic joy that comes from Jesus Christ, Himself! Once you meet Jesus, the only response that is acceptable is a joy that completely changes the way that you live.

Jesus impacts and communicates to us every single second, of every day, even if we do not realize what exactly is occurring. In reality, the way we live our life is our response to God, but there is only one acceptable response. And that is the response of joy! Now, I know what you're thinking, "how can we be joyful in a corrupt world?" and the response them comes down to how do we view the world around us.

Whether we realize it or not, every breath is a gift from God. Not only this, but everything that happens is a gift from God! Somedays it may not seem like it, but it truly is! While, the world we live in seems to falling to pieces, it is still being loved by God. Everything that is in existence is loved by God, so this changes the perspective on things a bit. If everything is loved by God, then everything He gives us is for our good! So, once we can come to realize that everything is a gift from Him, we must give Him a response. Any response that is something other than joy is not appreciating gifts He has given us. Obviously, this is easier said than done but it is not impossible!

Saint Mother Theresa of Calcutta went through a dark night of the soul for majority of her life as a nun. This meant that she questioned God a lot, and found it difficult to pray. But, her response to these emotions is what made her a saint. She responded by continuing to pray and trust in God and His love that He has for her. And as a result, she was extremely joyful! She has now become a model for how we should address our times of trouble and distress. Having rough days, or being cranky is not a sin, but we must not let it affect the way that we love.

Loving through our brokenness is what brings us closer to Jesus Christ! At the end of the day, the only response to meeting Jesus is joy! If we pursue Him through prayer and faithfulness, we are on the track for a joyful life! This does not mean that we will not have rough days, but it does mean that a rough day then becomes a greater opportunity to love Him! So, here are a few tangible things we can do to live a joyful life.

Ask Him
This may seem obvious, but it is so crucial! We get what we ask from God, so if we ask Him for joy we are sure to receive it! This can be done simply through a prayer from the heart in the morning.

Realize Everything As A Gift
When we are going throughout our day it is always a good reminder to think about how God is giving us a gift in that very moment. Whether it is through an interaction, your meal, or even just you walking, try to realize that you are only able to do that because of God.

Viewing the world as gift is a sure way to start living out the joy of the Gospel. For, then the most disturbing things will even become a gift. The best example of this is the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Let us pray to take the joy of the cross, which gives us life, and to implement it into our everyday activities.

God Bless,

Seth Conrad 
 
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