“Blessed are they who have kept the word with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance.” Luke 8:15
We find ourselves well into the Lenten season, and in a few short days our spiritual work of increased prayer, fasting and almsgiving will bring us to the day of redemption that Jesus promised us and gave his life for.
Now we ask ourselves, what impact will this time of Lent have on us after Easter? Have these days been a time of conversion of heart and mind? Will we be able to persevere in these works of mercy beyond these 40 days?
This has been a time to focus on those areas where Christ’s light may have become dim or where the darkness of the world has been allowed to seep into our thoughts and actions, where we no longer feel the presence of Jesus in our lives.
If this is your story, do not despair, you’re in good company. The apostles, too, fell prey to darkness when things got tough—recall Good Friday. But as we have been reminded time and time again, He does not turn away from us, quite the opposite is true. He leads us and others back to him in a new light, in renewed hope for the world—the light and the hope of eternal life that is Easter.
By their Weekend experience, I have to believe that the 36 new Cursillistas experienced His light and a renewed sense of hope in a profound way. I know I did!
Saint Teresa of Calcutta said it best, when she said, “He will always look after us. So we must cleave to Jesus, our whole life must simply be woven to Jesus. Jesus in the Mass, Jesus in my Sisters and Brothers, in the poor, and at adoration. It is the same Jesus.”
Not unlike the apostles, we meet that same Jesus, the Risen Christ, in all circumstances of life. We will soon hear these accounts in our Eastertide readings. The Acts of the Apostles give testament to how the apostles, guided by the Holy Spirit, shared His message in a world often unwilling to hear it, very similar to our own time. We would do well to focus our study on St. Luke’s Acts of the Apostles.
May we find Him as we go about our daily business, seek him with a generous heart in word and in the sacraments, and continue to persevere in faith and holiness.
Recommended Reading: A book by William S. Kurz, SJ, which gives an excellent commentary on The Acts of the Apostles. ISBN 978-0-8010-3633-0.