Wednesday, January 2, 2019

The Joy of Love

In paragraph 323 of The Joy of Love, Pope Francis writes: “It is a profound spiritual experience to contemplate  our loved ones with the eyes of God and to see Christ in them. This demands a freedom and openness which enable us to appreciate their dignity. We can be fully present to others only by giving fully of ourselves and forgetting all else.  Our loved ones merit our complete attention. Jesus is our model in this, for whenever people approached to speak with him, he would meet their gaze, directly and lovingly. No one felt overlooked in his presence, since his words and gestures conveyed the question: 'What do you want me to do for you?' This is what we experience in the daily life of the family."  

In community we are constantly reminded that each person merits our complete attention, since he possesses infinite dignity as the object of the Father's immense love.  This gives rise to a tenderness which can stir in the other the joy of being loved. Tenderness is expressed in a particular way by exercising loving care in treating the limitations of the other, especially when they are evident.” Note the word “especially”- especially when those human limitations are evident. There go all my excuses out the window!

Adapted from a meditation by Father Luke.