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The passerby | A most beautiful and joyful life


by Fr. Roy Cimagala

THAT’S how a genuine Christian life can be described. If
we only know the true face of Christianity, we would have no other
conclusion to make than to be convinced that Christian life is the
most beautiful and joyful life.

We would be overcome, overwhelmed and beside ourselves
with joy. We should do everything to be achieve that kind of life that
God himself is actively offering us together with the appropriate
means.

Thus, in the responsorial psalm of the Sixth Sunday of
Easter, Year A, we are made to say, even to scream in glee: “Let all
the earth cry out to God with joy.” (Ps 66,1) And the reason is simple
and clear.

Out of sheer, gratuitous love, God created us, and even
went all the way to making us, among all his creatures together with
the angels, his image and likeness, children of his, meant to share in
his very life.

And even if that image and likeness of God was damaged
because of our sin, he continues to love us by sending the Son who
became man like us to save us. He may have been angered because of our
sin and disobedience, but in the end, it was his mercy that prevailed
and continues to prevail.

As another psalm would put it, “His anger is fleeting, but
his favor lasts a lifetime. Weeping may stay the night, but joy comes
in the morning.” (30,5) We should never forget these divine assurance
so we would not waste precious time getting entangled with unnecessary
pains and sorrows over our unavoidable earthly predicaments.

Yes, we will always have pains and sorrows in this life.
But let’s not forget that as long as we refer them to Christ,
everything will always be taken care of. There is no reason for us to
remain feeling sad and pained for long. We are meant for joy and for
beauty. With God in Christ through the Holy Spirit, we can always have
them in spite of the heavy drama we can have in this life.

We have to be wary of our tendency to tackle our earthly
affairs by our lonesome, with hardly any reference to Christ. That
would be a crazy thing to do. But mysteries of mysteries, we often
fall into that condition.

This reminds me of what the genius Albert Einstein once
said: “Two things are infinite,” he said. “The universe and human
stupidity. But I am not sure about the universe.”

This sad reality of our human condition behooves us to be
deeply humble so that we would choose to be guided by our faith rather
than by our purely human estimations. We many times prefer to be on
our own instead of being guided by God who is actually always
intervening in our life.

What can help us in this is to follow what the gospel of
the Sixth Sunday of Easter is proposing to us—that we observe God’s
commandments faithfully. (cfr. Jn 14,15-21) By doing so, we make real
our love for God, our union with him, our participation in the very
life and power of God who can always make possible what is impossible
to us.

In practical terms, what we can do is always to look for
Christ in everything that we do, in every circumstance and situation
that we can find ourselves in. Let’s never be seduced to looking first
for some practical objectives when we do things. We have to look for
Christ first, and everything else would just follow. Much less should
we allow ourselves to be dominated simply by our moods and other
outside conditions and factors.

It’s when we look for him that we can have the probability
of finding him, and in finding him we can learn to love him, to follow
his ways of dealing with whatever human condition we can find
ourselves in.

With Christ, life can only be beautiful and joyful,
despite whatever!