Joy in the Kingdom of God
What is the reason for your joy ? Maybe a day off from study, other times fun, trip ? Perhaps you are pleased with the praise you receive, prize, maybe a new outfit or fashionable shoes ? Maybe that's why you are, that you have become the master of the class, or that you have been understood and forgiven for your guilt ?
What is the source of this joy or pleasure, that you experienced ? What else can be a source of joy ?
The joy of a mature man
The joy of effort
You perform different tasks and responsibilities every day, you engage in various activities, and you may take part in sports competitions, fighting for the victory of your team. Do you know, that it all takes effort and effort. But you have certainly experienced it, that the effort required to perform the tasks and fulfill the duties, that active participation in lessons or training on the pitch, they are at the same time the cause of your joy. It is not only because it is joy to receive a good certificate at the end of the year or cup after a victory, but it is also given by the effort itself, which brings us closer to the chosen goal.
The joy of serving others
Another source of joy is serving other people. Joy is penetrated by the care and effort of the mother and the toil of the father. The doctor experiences joy when he helps the patient. The teacher is happy about it, that it can educate and educate the young generation. The engineer is satisfied, when he gives a new home to the public. And what is the singer going through, when he receives loud applause ? What happens in the heart of the actor, director or writer, when his work has a great impact on society ? Is it not the joy that comes from serving another person? ? Maybe you've already experienced something similar yourself, when you have done good to someone ?
The joy of the community
What does the return of a father or mother after a long absence mean for the whole family? ? There is joy in the house, because they are all together again. What are you going through?, when, after a long separation, you find yourself again in a group of friends, in which everyone understands each other perfectly? It is the joy of community. Cosmonauts, when they happily return to earth, express their joy, that they are among the inhabitants of the earth again. In space, despite radio contact with the ground, feel lonely. Such experiences prove the truth, that the community is also a source of joy.
You certainly know, that the joy of effort, service to others or to the community, may not be permanent. A person's life can turn out that way, that he will be deprived of such joy. He may lose his loved ones, friends, family. His dedication to others can be met with incomprehension and ingratitude, and illness or age may deprive him of his ability to exercise and work. Is there any other source of joy for the Christian then? ?
Remember the following Gospel story :
After Christ's death on the cross, the two disciples, resigned and sad, went to Emmaus. When they talked about everything on the way, what happened in Jerusalem, “Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were imprisoned, as it were, so that they did not recognize him ". However, he started a conversation with them and explained to them, how the Scriptures of the prophets were fulfilled in Jesus. When the disciples recognized him at the breaking of the bread, and when he disappeared from their eyes, ,,in the same hour they departed and returned to Jerusalem ", where they told, what happened to them on the way (by. Luke 24, 13-33).
The meeting with the risen Christ restored joy to the sad, to the terrified disciples and apostles. The broken ones were united again by the joyful news : their Master and Lord lives, he has overcome death and evil and is among them. They will carry this joyful news into the world. They will share it with others.
It will be for the first Christians, about which St.. Łukasz writes so :
"All of you, what they believed, they stayed together and had everything in common. They sold property and goods and distributed them to everyone as needed. They were unanimous in the temple every day, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their meals with joy and simplicity of heart. They worshiped God, and all the people were kind to them. And the Lord added to them every day, who were saved " (Dz 2, 44-47).
Faith, that the risen Christ lives and overcomes all the ages, it is also a source of lasting joy for us. When we fight evil, we already have a share in Christ's victory.
This is Easter joy, that does not allow us, despite painful and difficult experiences, withdraw into yourself and despair, but he tells us to, like the first Christians, be joyful and kind to all people.
Liturgy as a school of mature joy
We experience Christian joy throughout the year during liturgical gatherings. It is expressed in song and liturgical music, in liturgical vestments and in church art. We often sing when we begin the liturgy : “Let us all rejoice in the Lord, celebrating the celebration… The angels rejoice at this celebration and praise the Son of God ".
The festive joy of Christians is manifested in the customs related to liturgical celebrations. They entered the custom and culture of individual nations and were most closely related to the life of the family. This joy manifests itself in the appearance of the house, in festive clothes, in a more carefully prepared meal, and even visits from relatives and friends on these days. The hearts of believers are filled with the deepest joy on the night of the Easter Eve. It is expressed in the Easter message of the Church of God :
"Rejoice now, hosts of angels, in heaven ! Rejoice, servants of God ! For the victory of such a great King, let the trumpet of salvation sound. Rejoice, ziemio, illuminated by such immeasurable radiance !… Rejoice, Holy Church, Our mother !”So when we participate in liturgical activities, we hear a call to joy. Our relationship with Christ is strengthened, giving us a sense of security, internal calm, joy and serenity.
How will I answer God ?
Willing to satisfy the need for joy, people look for it in games and entertainment - sometimes at any cost. It seems to them, that the demands of the Christian religion take away their joy of life. Meanwhile, it is different. The religion of Christ is a religion of true joy.
Is faith a source of joy for me ?
Do I enjoy celebrating liturgical holidays? ? If not, why not ? I will think, am I not an egoist in seeking joy. Maybe someone is experiencing sadness over illness in the family, and I have a grudge against him, that he is not playing ?
I'll think about it, how can I make others happy : parents, educators. How can I join and maintain a happy mood with my colleagues ? Do I not spoil this mood by being easily offended ?
A song can express your joy : “Live joyfully in the world - because God loves us.
He gave us life and the sun - and a whole beautiful world.
And so many good people - and my own, new trail. Living in the world joyfully - because God loves us.
Live in the world joyfully - because you can move on.
To be better and better every day - and even to love the Cross.
In everyday gray life - to see God's thought.
Live in the world joyfully - because you can move on.
Live joyfully in the world - because good can be sown.
Always help people - and give, not take.
What is best, give each brother.
Live joyfully in the world - because good can be sown " (Muse. and words : FROM. Clarity).
■ Think :
1. Wymień źródła radości.
2. Dlaczego religię chrześcijańską można nazwać religią radości ?
3. Jak wyrażał swą radość pierwotny Kościół ?
4. Jak wyraża się radość w liturgii ?
48. „Radujcie się zawsze w Panu ; I repeat again : rejoice !” (Flp 4, 4).
49. Co przede wszystkim daje chrześcijaninowi powód do radości ?
The decisive reason for joy for a Christian is his union with the risen Christ and the presence of Christ in the new community created by him..
50. Kiedy radość chrześcijanina można nazwać dojrzałą ?
A Christian's joy can then be called mature, when it is based on union with Christ and on kindness and self-sacrificing work for others.
■ Task :
1. Wymień święta, which most emphasize Christian joy.
2. Wylicz i krótko opisz obyczaje i zwyczaje wyrażające świąteczną radość w twojej parafii lub kraju. Justify their religious significance.
3. Jakie znasz opisy zwyczajów świątecznych w literaturze polskiej ?