Keep the Fire Of Love Burning! – My Easter Prayer
Happy Easter everyone! Hallelujah, Jesus is risen from the dead!
Whew, that was an amazing 4 days of immersion into the Passion of our Lord Jesus. And what is the one thing I got from these four days of our commemoration of the Lord’s suffering and death?
Keeping the fire burning.
The fire of love. The passion for God, His people, and His work of salvation. Just as Jesus was so passionate about God, us and our salvation, He paid for it with His death. Not just any death.. The whole enchilada of agony and pain.
Did you know that the crucifixion was the worst way a person could be punished and killed in those days? It was only reserved for the worst of criminals.
And the Lord allowed Himself to go through it.. Death to life and life for me.. Jesus on Calvary.
That’s fire.. The fire of love burning so hot it consumed Him in total self-giving.
I went home to spend Holy Week with my family.
Even though the Easter Triduum started Thursday, in our place our celebration always starts on Wednesday with a mass followed by the ‘Paseo de Los Santos’ or the ‘Procession of the Saints.’
There was St. Peter…St. Jude.. St. Veronica.. St. Salome..of course, Mama Mary and Jesus, and a host of other saints who especially play a part in the Passion.. And we hold a procession all over the streets of the city from and back to the church.
I went with my mama, my niece, my sister and her husband and their little baby boy.
While we were walking, immersed in prayer and reflection, and with dusk approaching.. My niece, Bea, went running around with the other kids trying to get their candles lit so we could light ours from her candle.
Unfortunately, it was a windy night and her candle light kept getting blown off. But she never gave up until all our candles were lit and then it became the responsibility of each to keep it lit.. Covering it with our hands or anything to keep it burning..
We never succeeded.. It was just too windy and our lights kept blowing off. We ended up with our candles almost intact.
Then it dawned on me.. That’s like the fire of love within us..
God has lit it in us with His own Spirit…at many different times in our lives starting from our Baptism.. And now Jesus lit it eternally with His own passion.
But there are gusts of winds threatening to put it off.. Winds of indeference…fear..sin.. Apathy.. Forgetfulness…Worldly pleasures and temptations.. Distractions..carnal affections…success if we’re not careful..
It is our individual responsibility to keep it burning…keeping it aflamed..even against these winds..
But we are not alone.. We were never meant to do it alone.
God set us into community.
That’s why we celebrate as a community.. We worship as a community.
It’s like one big family…having dinner together.. Listening to words of life.. Eating the Bread of life.. Going home full of hope encouragement..hearts aflamed again.. And again.
Maybe that’s why Jesus established the Priesthood..and the Eucharist… So His family can have a reason to gather around with someone presiding over.. Getting nourished with His Body and Blood.
We have, then, my brothers and sisters, complete freedom to go into the Most Holy Place by means of the death of Jesus. He opened for us a new way, a living way, through the curtain — that is, through his own body. (Hebrews 10:19-20 GNBDK)
Yes, we need times of solitude and reflection.. But it is so we can then go back into community..encouraging one another..loving one another.. Helping each other..nurturing..keeping the flame alive.
Let us hold on firmly to the hope we profess, because we can trust God to keep his promise. Let us be concerned for one another, to help one another to show love and to do good. Let us not give up the habit of meeting together, as some are doing. Instead, let us encourage one another all the more, since you see that the Day of the Lord is coming nearer. (Hebrews 10:23-25 GNBDK)
This is how we keep the fire of love for God, His people, and His work of salvation, burning.
- Pray in solitude, communing with God…allowing Him to keep the flame alive within us with His own Fire of Love, the Holy Spirit.
- Worship with the community..stay active..connected.. Encouraging one another with your presence..being the love of God personified.
Dear Jesus, keep the flame burning in my heart with the fire of Your Spirit and let it spread to whoever comes near it. Amen.