Rejoice, The Lord Is Coming

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Today is Gaudete Sunday which means rejoice. Rejoice because the Lord is near; he is coming at Christmas that is only 2 weeks away. You might be saying how can I rejoice with this spouse, with these kids, with a lack of money, with the sickness that I have? How can I rejoice with my situation?

What is the joy that changes lives? What is the joy that changes your heart and the way you look at things? It can only be one thing. That Christ loves you and me as we are. Be careful it doesn’t mean that he loves you because you’re good. It’s just the opposite he loves you with your lust, with your selfishness, with your enormous ego. And he doesn’t ask anything of you.

I was impressed to see this Black Poster Project we had here in the church on Thursday night. The ladies who organized it both of whom had lost a son who were in their twenties and were totally at peace. The opposite of joy is sadness, but joy doesn’t mean that we don’t suffer. But in the midst of any suffering, you can have peace and joy. Christian joy is not just for a moment like affections, or a new car, or a raise at work. It stays with you when you have Christ.

If you don’t have joy, brothers and sisters, you don’t know who you are. Because deep down were sinners who are loved only by Christ. You don’t accept this, or you don’t believe it until you experience it. When you have this joy, your life will be totally different; something inside of you changes; yeah, it changes even though the external circumstances are the same.

You can see this in this gospel when the tax collectors ask what should we do? And Jesus doesn’t say: change your job. They are the most despised of the Jews because they overcharge them to give money to the Romans and to themselves. Jesus only says to them: be honest, be loyal, and take only what you should take. And to the soldiers he says be satisfied with your wages. Be satisfied with your life. Are you satisfied? Do you accept what God has given you? The number of credit cards in your wallet shows the level of your acceptance.

How are you planning to live Christmas with presents, with setting up a manger, I hope, with buying a tree, and singing certain Christmas songs. But the most important thing is that Christ be born in you this year. I pray that he enters you in a serious way. He wants to enter your heart, but only if you allow him.

The end of the gospel speaks about how Christ will come with a windowing fan to clear the floor. He comes with this fan and throws the wheat and the chaff in the air. The wind blows the chaff away and the heavier wheat falls. This is what God wants to do with our sins, with our egoism, with our selfishness. It is like the chaff that will be blown away and only the wheat is left. How beautiful is that!

Let us rejoice brothers that the Lord loves us in this way he wants only what’s best for us. Wait for him these last two weeks of Advent. Let him enter all aspects of your life. He wants to bring you joy and peace.

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