Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity
Day 2 – Tuesday January 19th – Maturing internally
“Abide in me as I abide in you”
- Ephesians 3:14-21 May Christ dwell in our hearts
- Luke 2:41-52 Mary treasured all these things
The encounter with Jesus gives rise to the desire to stay with him and to abide in him: a time in which fruit matures.
Being fully human, like us Jesus grew and matured. He lived a simple life, rooted in the practices of his Jewish faith. In this hidden life in Nazareth, where apparently nothing extraordinary happened, the presence of the Father nourished him.
Mary contemplated the actions of God in her life and in that of her son. She treasured all these things in her heart. Thus, little by little, she embraced the mystery of Jesus.
We too need a long period of maturation, an entire lifetime, in order to plumb the depths of Christ’s love, to let him abide in us and for us to abide in him.
Without our knowing how, the Spirit makes Christ dwell in our hearts. And it is through prayer, by listening to the word, in sharing with others, by putting into practice what we have understood, that the inner being is strengthened.
“Letting Christ descend into the depths of our being … He will penetrate the regions of the mind and the heart, he will reach our flesh unto our innermost being, so that we too will one day experience the depths of mercy.”
[The Sources of Taizé (2000) p. 134]
May we receive in our hearts the presence of Christ,
and cherish it as a secret of love.
Nourish our prayer,
enlighten our reading of Scripture,
act through us,
so that the fruits of your gifts can patiently grow in us.
- The Bible tells us very little about Jesus’ youth and early adulthood, when he seems to have lived an ordinary life in Nazareth. How are you conscious of God’s presence with you in the everyday things of life?
- In your church or group of churches how do you nurture your children and young people to walk with God in their everyday lives, and how could you do this better?
- What does the churches having a ‘presence’ together in the community look like in your area?
Go and Do
Global: As people of faith think about how you can work together for the day when all can know a full and abundant human life.
Local: Consider how the churches in your area can be more child friendly spaces.
Personal: Give thanks and pray for the children you know.