Serenity is a quiet joy that lights up the soul. It’s the tenderness found in love and its infinite goodness. Persons with this joy have open hearts because they are willing to forgive. Their hearts are illuminated and born in tranquility. This joy could be found in believers. These Christians are known to have spiritual hearts of goodness.
A theologian, ethicist and professor at the Union Theological Seminary – New York, Reinhold Niebuhr (1892–1971) prayed, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” This popular prayer shows insight into the heart that’s supreme, and able to discern what’s true, wise, and best.
People of faith light up with joy as they encounter the poor. This is true love that expresses itself in helpful acts. This fruitful love is manifested from the depths of one’s heart. It’s by service that an individual can attain this reality. This is the love of Christ taking root in the repentant heart. This is love beyond love – one about caring for the poor. It’s the way Christians concentrate on uplifting the ostracized from their plight of degradation. This service is considered the highest good that’s explained in the Gospel. It’s the face of truth expressing itself freely without inhibitions in our society. Only cleansed hearts truly reveal the joy of well-lived lives.
Eleanor Roosevelt (1884–1962), a first lady of the United States, politician and diplomat said, “People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is built.” This is true with Christians that are willing to serve. Their actions build character and impact those they encounter.
The Wine of Joy
Wine is a festive drink. Through it joy is born, and there are associations, and symbolism that describe its remarkable presence. It can be best described as love that flows at weddings, poured out during Eucharistic feasts, and used for medicinal purposes. Wine is mystery all by itself. People are touched by its essence. By it they show joy in the good news of Christ, and his Spirit of Truth. Consecrated wine is a lightning rod of holiness in a church’s gathering. This brings together hearts making them one community.
Pope John XXⅢ (1881–1963), a bishop of Rome best summarized the effect of wine on men and women when he said, “Men are like wine – some turn to vinegar, but the best improve with age.” Improvement yes! The desire to better ourselves as we continue our journey through life, are foremost on our minds. It must be the focus of this quest as we endeavor to live purpose-driven lives.
Joy of Peace
A president of United States Lyndon B. Johnson (1908–1973) said, “Peace is a journey of a thousand miles and it must be taken one step at a time.” O light Eternal, the maker of peace, let us shine our lights to mankind. Like president Johnson our lights will be steadfast, never letting our batteries run low, for the distance is great. This is the expression of genuine love, and concern to all people – rich, poor, and indifferent alike. We can capture this serenity through the dialogue of love, our caring ways, and steadfastness in faith. These gifts are boundless, and transcend all things. So that’s why we mustn’t be afraid of practicing goodness that some may consider a weakness. Let our light be on the Good Shepherd, who is the purveyor of peace, and tranquility. We therefore know that we have achieved peace when we have serene minds.