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THURSDAY AFTER EPIPHANY, JANUARY 06, 2022



A Reading from 1 Jn 4:19–5:4


Beloved, we love God because

he first loved us.

If anyone says, “I love God,”

but hates his brother, he is a liar;

for whoever does not love a brother whom he has seen

cannot love God whom he has not seen.

This is the commandment we have from him:

Whoever loves God must also love his brother.


Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is begotten by God,

and everyone who loves the Father

loves also the one begotten by him.

In this way we know that we love the children of God

when we love God and obey his commandments.

For the love of God is this,

that we keep his commandments.

And his commandments are not burdensome,

for whoever is begotten by God conquers the world.

And the victory that conquers the world is our faith.


REFLECTION

"For the love of God is this, that we keep his commandments.

And his commandments are not burdensome"


When I think about this phrase, I find it very interesting.


In today's society, where "my will" is law, how can it be that someone else's command, (e.g. God's) is an act of love?


A society where everybody is drawn to fulfill their own pleasures, to follow one's whims, can be a society full of violence and corruption. Families are the first place where rules are seen and followed. Even when children might rebel against their parents, the stability of a home and "rule following" help them develop a sense of freedom, where they can truly be themselves.


In her book "Made for Freedom", Jutta Burggraf tells us that:

To give love, one must first find it in one's own life. The "street kids" of Rio de Janeiro are a clear example: many of them are drawn toward criminal behavior, lack self-respect, and don't even fear death, because they see no place for themselves in the world. They have been unable to develop "original trust" that other children experience from their parents within their families. 

On the other hand, someone with original trust can look at his surroundings with confidence. His fundamental outlook is grounded in a profound confidence in himself and in the trustworthiness of human beings - trustworthiness in which there shines something of the faithfulness of God, who is always in our side.

How many people nowadays distrust "the patriarchy", "the establishment", "them", even God.


Jesus demands from us, but assures us that His "burden is light" (Mt 11:30).


We need to truly pray to God for many good Catholic families: for stable homes for our children. Pray not be afraid of trusting God and following His commands, so we can be free to follow Him and eventually be with Him in Heaven.


Let us pray the Dedication of a Family to Mary, so she can help and protect our families, and guide us towards her loving Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.


God bless y'all!







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