We live in very dark times, we struggle and labor and every day appears to get darker. There are times perhaps that we as Christians could allow ourselves to get discouraged, but we cannot. The more difficult the times, the more we must do our best to walk with God. It is our mission as God’s people to pray for others, to help everyone and to do our best. By our words, actions, by our lives we must lead all to heaven. On that holiest of nights, when the Christ child was born, the angels came to the field where the shepherds lay. “An angel of the Lord appeared and the glory of the Lord shone around them…Suddenly a great army of heaven’s angels appeared with the angel, singing praises to God.” Luke 2:9-13. But as I read recently, in that manger, where the babe was born, Mary and Joseph did not see or hear the angels, they could only see their little child, crying and shivering, hungry and cold in the dirty and smelly stable. Like our lives, raw and sometimes ugly, with very real difficulties like worries of how to take care of our families and cold weather and hungry children.
We cannot falter from our prayers, by our words, actions, by our lives we must point the way to the Christ child, as the angels did that night. We must be lights in this dark world leading others, showing them the way. It seems there are so many who are lost in today’s world, I find that I will be in conversation with someone and suddenly I am talking about life and God comes up in conversation. I think that is no accident. I take those opportunities to talk about my faith, to say that without God, the weight of the world would be unbearable to me. That my life is better because of my relationship with Jesus, I do not force my beliefs on anyone, but my voice is heard.
For many years I was quiet about what God was doing in my life, but no more. I am very open about my weekly prayer group, I tell people if they ever need prayers to call me and I offer to pray for them. I don’t check to see if they are Catholic or believers or if they go to church, as John Travolta said in the movie, Michael, “that’s not my area”. I only know to pray and to offer my thoughts on what has given me peace.
So on we go; faith is believing without seeing, and the more I believe and trust in Him, the more I see. Rather than rest in Him, I want to be a resting place for Him. So I encourage you, continue with your prayer life, say the Rosary, try to get to a mass during the week, ask the Holy Spirit for guidance and direction and keep your focus on God. Perhaps in our everyday lives, we may only see the cold and dirty stable, but in the quiet of our hearts we can hear the angels sing.
Wishing you and your family the most blessed Christmas.
Copyright 2012 Maureen O’Shea