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Father Muench Says...

Finding strength, serenity, stability, joy

Aug. 2, 2017

By Father William Muench
NCC columnist

In the words of Pope Francis: “We cannot live as Christian separate from the rock who is Christ.  He gives us strength and stability, but also joy and serenity.” 

Someone gave me one of those day calendars with a statement from Pope Francis for each day as a Christmas present.  Today, I would like to share with you some ideas drawn from that recent message from Pope Francis.

Here Pope Francis tells us that for us, Christians, our only foundation is best found in Jesus. He must be like a rock for us, a rock for all that we are and do.  With Jesus, our rock, we will find readiness to live out Jesus’ call to peace and love. So, Pope Francis goes on in this statement to tell us of the gifts that Jesus will give us as we unite ourselves with him.  This relationship means more than just praying to Jesus or going to Mass.  Our friendship with Jesus should be a close one; it is Jesus who has told us that he wants to be our friend.  He wants to show us the way for life.

Pope Francis continues here in making it clear that uniting our lives with Jesus gives us strength and stability.  To be a bold and dedicated disciple of Jesus, we must have the Lord’s strength and stability.

Our lives as followers of Jesus are often filled with confusion, even fear and we need the Lord’s strength.  Our discipleship demands confidence. The Lord promises us the strength so that we can make the right decisions to live each day in the spirit of Our Savior.

In addition, Pope Francis tells us that we need, and Jesus gives us, stability.  As disciples of the Lord, to be stable in faith and dedication, we need the Lord’s stability.  Only in this way will we be ready to live with a certain determination in making our decisions to follow Jesus. 

The life of a good Christian demands an endurance, a peace of mind, a trustworthiness in life.  I believe that this stability of the Lord gives us a true maturity of life that comes from our closeness with Jesus.  It is all about making proper decisions, bringing peace and happiness and love to all that we do. 

Pope Francis goes on to tell us that, as disciples of Jesus, we will find joy and serenity.  Finding Jesus as our rock leads to a happiness that comes from the strength of Our Lord.  The Lord gives us a happiness that brings serenity. 

As bold disciples of the Lord, we find purpose in life that leads not only to a certain confidence as a Christian but also the serenity of being united with the Lord in a serenity of the love of our Lord.

This should lead us to gratitude for all that Jesus gives us as his disciples.  Our life in this world is transformed because we are friends of Jesus. 

The Lord gives us the power of the Holy Spirit – a real strength – to live well, to help others, to make a difference.

Pope Francis reminds us in any places that the closeness to Jesus leads to a happiness that nothing else can give us.  This is what Jesus came to us, to our world, to bring salvation and forgiveness and love.

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