< <  

Monday, May 27, 1996

  > >

St. Augustine of Canterbury

1 Peter 1:3-9
Psalm 111
Mark 10:17-27

View Readings
Similar Reflections

the purpose of life

"Although you have never seen Him, you love Him." —1 Peter 1:8

The purpose of life in Christ is to receive His love and to give it to others. Thus, we serve the poor not primarily to serve the poor but to receive the Lord's love in the poor and to give His love to them (see Mt 25:40; 1 Cor 13:3). When we obey the commandments, we are not just avoiding self-destruction and hell; we are primarily expressing our love of the Lord Who commands us (see Jn 15:10).

Because life in Christ is a life of love, trials are often the best blessings (see 1 Pt 1:6), since our love for the Lord can grow deeper in sufferings. When we realize that love, not self, is the center of life, we embrace the cross and rejoice in giving everything to the Lord. In the context of love, a compromised, lukewarm gospel is nauseating (Rv 3:16). Christianity makes sense in the light of love, and only in the light of love.

Yesterday, the Lord gave you the Holy Spirit in a new Pentecost. He gave you gifts, fruit, power, strength, and light. As wonderful as these graces are, however, the main point of Pentecost is love. Love is "the way which surpasses all the others" (1 Cor 12:31). Love is even greater than faith and hope (1 Cor 13:13). "Seek eagerly after love" (1 Cor 14:1). "God is Love" (1 Jn 4:16).

Prayer:  Father, on this Memorial Day, send the Spirit to produce the fruit of love in my life (Gal 5:22).

Promise:  "Although you have never seen Him, you love Him, and without seeing you now believe in Him, and rejoice with inexpressible joy touched with glory because you are achieving faith's goal, your salvation." —1 Pt 1:8-9

Praise:  Augustine came to the Pope with his companions' resignations and left as the leader of the mission.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, October 10, 1995

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, October 13, 1995