Keep on loving
The story is told about a policeman who was at a loss because nobody got the plate number of a vehicle involved in a hit-and-run accident, until a man came up and said he saw the plate number. He said that the first number was 4, and the rest read “Registration.” For Registration!
Today is Christmas Day, the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. In today’s Gospel (Lk. 2, 1-14), we hear how Joseph and Mary went up from Nazareth to Bethlehem to register in the first census as decreed by Caesar Augustus. It was a long and difficult journey, especially for Mary. The first Christmas was wrapped with poverty and uncertainties. But it was also filled with so much hope, joy and peace.
“4 Registration.” Funny how we remember only the first number, and forget the rest. Many of us don’t go the distance, like what Joseph and Mary did. Many of us just focus on the trimmings and traditions of Christmas, and never quite get into the essence of Christmas—which is about a God who loved the world so much that He sent His only Son, so that we will have eternal life (Jn. 3, 16).
As it was on the first Christmas, is there no room for the Lord in our hearts? Are we still so full of ourselves that there is no room for prayer, forgiveness, kindness and purity in our hearts?
It has been 2,016 years since Jesus was born. Two-thirds of the world has not yet heard nor accepted Him and His message. Has our country for that matter accepted the Gospel values He has given to us? On a personal note, let us ask ourselves today: Has Jesus made a difference in my own life?
Every Dec. 18, birthday of my Papa (Guillermo), I say the Misa de Gallo in Antipolo Street, Sampaloc, Manila, to honor him, who stayed in a boarding house along the riles when he was taking up law at the University of the Philippines, Padre Faura, Manila. Papa always told us to have hope and vision, and a sense of mission in spite of humble beginnings. Faith and hard work help us rise above our humble beginnings and limitations.
During the dawn Mass last Dec. 18, the last candle in the Advent wreath (representing love) did not light up, but the one assigned to light it did not give up. She kept on trying until she finally succeeded, to the delight of the whole congregation. The light went off three more times, but she kept on trying. It was a beautiful reminder for us not to give up on love, and not to stop loving.
Christmas is sharing, so I am sharing with you something which a friend shared with me. It’s about porcupines; in winter they have to keep close to each other to keep themselves warm, but in the process of doing so, they prick each other because of their sharp quills.
So it is told that a group of porcupines decided to distance themselves from one another. But they began to die, alone and frozen. Finally they decided to go back to being together, and learned to live with their little wounds caused by their closeness, but which also gave the warmth that made them survive.
May we learn to live with the imperfections and pricks of people around us. As the “Desiderata” says: “With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it’s still a beautiful world.” Let us not give up on each other. Merry Christmas everyone!
Think about this: “The favors we give away to others, and the blessings we share are like boomerangs. They come back as favors and blessings some other day, and in some other ways. It is heaven’s way of giving rewards to those who share with unselfish hearts.” Keep on sharing. Keep on loving.
A moment with the Lord:
Lord, help us to keep on loving, and not give up on each other, as You have done to us. Amen.
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