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Father Muench Says...

Finding hope in goodness of God’s love

January 16, 2013

By Father William Muench
NCC columnist

So much has happened right here in our own land over the past few weeks. It seems almost like a test of faith in this Year of Faith. Now is truly the time for a renewed faith in the spirit of this Year of Faith so that we can meet the new challenges of life. May we help to bring faith alive in the hearts of those that we know and meet. 

Several of my Christmas cards this year did reflect a wonderful feeling of  the importance of faith. Some wrote to me of difficult times during the past year – yet, they always added – “Thank, God, for my faith.  If it hadn’t been for my faith, I would not have made it.”

As we pray and work to strengthen faith in this Year of Faith, we must also renew that wonderful virtue of hope – hope and confidence in the goodness of God, hope that gives confidence to follow the Lord and to do all that God asks of us.  We are the People of God so we should find hope in the goodness of God’s great love for us as demonstrated in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.

I pray that this has been your experience, that you have discovered a real hope and confidence in the Lord to do something for God and his Church and are ready to face seemingly impossible tasks with confidence, unafraid to act.

I firmly believe that each and every day of our lives the Lord has something important for us to do. Some days it may even be many things.  Often, the Lord needs us to do something very simple – a smile, a greeting. However, there will be days that it will be something big, something challenging.  In this way, we truly make the world a better place – we truly brings God’s Spirit to a needy world.

The Lord’s gift of this magnificent virtue of hope gives each one of us the confidence to use well each of the opportunities that the Lord gives us, today.  There are times when this task will be a surprise – something we least expect yet, something important – and you are the one who can and must accomplish this.  God’s surprises are such an important part of life, for us, Christians.

So, how do we know?  I am certain that the Lord sends us signs – much like the star that led the Magi to Jesus as we celebrate on the Feast of the Epiphany.,There are many stars from the Lord in each of our lives so, it is important that we pray for awareness, divine awareness.  Too often, I know that I miss a star in my life – I know I do. Too many times I could have done so much more. I pray that I do not miss any of those opportunities that will make my life better – indeed, my world better.

Each of us will have examples of how God has led us to do something important for the Lord.  I remember too many times when ordinary days became extraordinary because the Lord suddenly placed an important opportunity into my life.  May I never miss any of these opportunities.  I know only too well that miracles – truly, miracles – happened because God led me to be at the right place to do the right thing.

So, each day I have confidence that, with the Lord, I will recognize an opportunity to accomplish something great for the Lord.  My morning prayer is this: “With you, Lord, I have the confidence to change the world.  Help me to recognize my opportunity today.  Stay with me – guide me – challenge me.”   

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