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Thursday, January 8, 2004

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1 John 4:19—5:4
Psalm 72
Luke 4:14-22

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does the christmas spirit have you?

"Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee." —Luke 4:14

On Sunday, the last day of Christmas, our true Love, Jesus, will give us a deeper relationship with the Holy Spirit, the true Christmas Spirit. On Sunday, we will celebrate the Baptism of Jesus, when the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus in fulfillment of one of Isaiah's prophecies (see Lk 4:18; Is 61:1). On that last day of Christmas, we will be given a renewal of our Baptisms and Confirmations. We will have a new Pentecost and a deeper life in the Spirit. We will end Christmas in the Spirit and begin a year of the Holy Spirit in which we will "bring glad tidings to the poor...liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind" (Lk 4:18).

However, the Holy Spirit will not come upon us against our will. We must accept the grace to be docile to the Spirit. This means:

  • repenting and believing in Jesus (Acts 2:38),
  • crucifying our "flesh with its passions and desires" (Gal 5:24),
  • decreasing so Jesus will increase (Jn 3:30), and
  • letting it be done to us according to God's word (see Lk 1:38).

The question is not: "Do we have the Holy Spirit?" but "Does the Holy Spirit have us?" Come, Holy Spirit, very soon!

Prayer:  Father, end this Christmas season with Pentecost.

Promise:  "We, for our part, love because He first loved us." —1 Jn 4:19

Praise:  Ruth inspired others by her openness to the Holy Spirit and her willingness to "let it be done unto" her according to God's will.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Staying Filled with the Spirit on audio AV 57-1 or video V-57.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert A. Stricker, June 23, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 26, 2003