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“Rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” –Luke 10:20
The final week of Jesus’ life is so compelling in its details that we spend a full week of every year reflecting on it. Only the first day of that week, Palm Sunday, is a happy experience. The rest is a quicksand rushing toward tragedy.
So we may be pardoned for overthinking the dire parts of the Gospel story. Yet no one followed Jesus originally because of the way he died. The first disciples were drawn in by the way he lived. Jesus taught with authority (not like other religious leaders). He backed up soothing words with healing actions. He spoke of justice and then treated the poor and the unwelcome with dignity and tenderness. He denounced evil and then bounced demons out on their ears. The day-to-day story of Jesus was a litany of joy for those who followed after him. We can’t afford to forget joy as we follow him today.
Let’s make room for joy in the practice of our faith. Attend Mass like you’re really celebrating. Dare to smile in church. Let them know you are Christian by your laugh. Bring joy to others daily too.
Who or what brought me joy recently?
How can I bring joy where I go today?
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