According to Brian Grogan SJ, God gives us a light to help us through the surrounding darkness. When kindly light is shared, he says, “it can give us more light to go on, and also can energise us to play our own part in the struggle against the evil around us” (Jesuit.ie blog, Feb 9th 2015). As Christians, how exactly is this manifested?
Hope in times of trouble: we all encounter suffering in our lives, for example an exam failure, an illness or a death in the family. We may despair for some time and our inner selves may reach rock bottom. But, our faith in God teaches us to see the glimpses of hope, the cloud with a silver lining and the little joys that restore us.
Strength in our weakness: our humanity tells us that we are vulnerable people, that we need each other for love, intimacy and wholeness. As Christians, we believe that God is very much part of this picture – that we are transformed into beings of dignity, respect and compassion. We are lifted high and we experience consolation.
Friendship with Jesus: our relationship with the divine enables us to respond more earnestly to opportunities of greater love and to be more assertive in creating new paths. When we feel interiorly moved in prayer, our hearts expand, we reach out to Jesus and he draws us closer. His example serves as a real guide and we find peace.
Church community: we believe that God looks beyond our sins and supports the faith of our Church. This community acts as a beacon of light in the messiness of life. We celebrate mass in the same form and in many languages. We stand firm. We focus on reaching out and witnessing the gospel to our neighbours.
Grace: an endless offering of gifts, help and unconditional love. If embraced, we glorify God and we become more fully alive. Our spiritual growth means that we cannot be tied down or diagnosed, for example we are humble and powerful, we have self-control and wildness, we are loving and challenging. Grace also brings a state of flow to our words and deeds.
IN GOD I TRUST
In God I trust,
Yeah that’s a must,
Sometimes it seems rough and tough,
Cause the road is full of dust,
But all you gotta do is put your trust,
And I guarantee you’re gonna make it with an A plus.
Let’s stop living in dream land,
And for one minute just clasp your hands,
Come on, face reality,
Look at my life, it was a tragedy,
I grew up without a family,
No one really cared for me,
But God, and the Sisters of Mercy.
They were with me through good times and bad times,
Matter of fact, all the time,
And if I had one wish, I wish I’d never die,
Cause they got me so far in life,
And without them, I couldn’t survive,
Yeah everyday I strive, to survive.
So I’m writing this song, to let you all know,
That I love you all.
Lyrics by Hansel Renville, Saint John Bosco Boy’s Orphanage, Guyana, 2006