“In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
It is not God’s will that we should be sad and miserable in life. Jesus today concludes his message by asking us to cheer up and be happy because he has overcome the world. Rejoice, be of good cheer. Troubles may come, but remember that the battle we are fighting is one that has been won already on the Cross of Calvary. And so, we do not fight as victims but as victors.
Jesus wants us to be happy because being in a state of joy makes us healthier and makes living itself more worthwhile. To be happy when everything is going on well with you is normal. But to be happy when things are not going so well is extraordinary.
And the happiness Jesus is referring to is that which we can have despite the tribulations we face. It is happiness that does not depend on money, clothes, food or anything that this world has to offer. It is happiness from above.
No wonder, one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is joy. You cannot have the Holy Spirit in you and remain sad and miserable because the Holy Spirit must bear fruit in you. The joy the Holy Spirit gives is that which remains regardless of whatever trial or tribulations we may encounter in life.
Let us pray for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon our lives that he may fill us with supernatural joy and bless us with a kind of peace that this world cannot provide.
In our first reading, we encounter another fruit of the Holy Spirit which is the ability to speak in tongues. We are told that as soon as Paul laid his hands on the people of Ephesus, the Holy Spirit came upon them and they spoke in tongues and prophesied.
When it comes to speaking in tongues, let us allow the Holy Spirit to speak through us rather than simply try to utter words that we don’t understand just to give people the impression of holiness.
The gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit are very many, and the Holy Spirit being God is the one who decides what particular gift or talent he is to bestow upon us. All we have to do is to be prepared.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, may the Holy Spirit find in me a welcome guest. Amen.
Bible Study: Acts 19:1-8, Ps. 682-7, John 16:29-33)
© Rev. Fr. Evaristus Abu