When Jesus came to us, we usually made His life burdensome. He carried the burden of our sins (Mt 8:17), and He carried the cross to pay for our sins (Jn 19:17; Catechism, 598). When Jesus came to us, we usually did not refresh Him. He was rejected, ridiculed, spurned, disbelieved, avoided (Is 53:3), mocked (Mk 15:19-20), and crucified. How wonderful that Jesus does not deal with us according to our sins and requite us according to our crimes! (Ps 103:10)
Jesus is "merciful and gracious," "slow to anger and abounding in kindness" (Ps 103:8). "He pardons all [our] iniquities" (Ps 103:3). "He crowns [us] with kindness and compassion, He fills [our] lifetime with good" (Ps 103:4-5). He refreshes, teaches, guides, and helps us (Mt 11:28-30).
Praise Jesus forever that He doesn't treat us as we had once treated Him. Let us treat Him as He has treated us. Like Martha, let's throw open our home and our life to Jesus and welcome Him with open arms (Jn 12:2). Like Mary of Bethany, let us lavish love and praise on Jesus (Jn 12:3). Like the magi, let us give Jesus our very best gifts (Mt 2:11).
Come to Jesus (Mt 11:28). Love Him with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength (Lk 10:27). "Let every heart prepare Him room." Make Jesus welcome this Advent, Christmas, and forever.
|Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from December 1, 2005 through January 31, 2006.
†Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 19, 2005.