refreshment in the deep end
"Refresh this heart of mine in Christ." —Philemon 20
In 2001, Pope John Paul II proclaimed and prophesied that the Lord's call for the Church at the beginning of the third millennium is: "Put out into the deep" (see Lk 5:4). Many of you heeded that call and have been serving the Lord in the "deep end" ever since. You are weary and a long way from the stability of dry land.
Jesus has made plans to refresh you out there in the deep.
- Jesus is with you always (Mt 1:23; 28:20). Simply turn to Him. "Come to Me, all you who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you" (Mt 11:28).
- Receive the eucharistic Jesus in Mass, even daily. His Real Presence in the Eucharist is His presence "par excellence" (Ecclesia de Eucharistia, 11, Pope John Paul II).
- Jesus refreshes us through other members of His Body (see 1 Cor 16:18; Phlm 7; 2 Tm 1:16, RSV-CE).
- God's love is so great that He sent His Living Word, in the person of His Son, Jesus, to refresh us. His Word is Food for us (see Mt 4:4; Dt 8:3). His Word sustains us (Heb 1:3) and causes us to grow (Acts 20:32). "Such is the force and power of the Word of God that it can serve the Church as her support and vigor and the children of the Church as strength for their faith, food for the soul, and a pure and lasting font of spiritual life" (Catechism, 131).
Remain in the deep and allow Jesus to refresh you. Some veteran disciples in great need of refreshment have survived by stoically closing their hearts. This is not a survival technique, but a refusal to embrace the refreshment Jesus provides. Daily, allow your hearts to be open, docile, and "refresh-able." May this be for you a "season of refreshment" (Acts 3:20) out in the deep end.
Prayer: Father, each day may Your joy be our strength (Neh 8:10).
Promise: "The reign of God is already in your midst." —Lk 17:21
Praise: St. Frances Xavier ministered the love of Jesus to countless children through her schools, hospitals, and orphanages.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 24, 2014
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