When scientists looked for a unified theory of the universe they forgot the most powerful unseen force. Love is Light, that enlightens those who give and receive it. Love is gravity, because it makes some people feel attracted to others. Love is power, because it multiplies the best we have, and allows humanity not to be extinguished in their blind selfishness. Love unfolds and reveals. For love we live and die. Love is God and God is Love.
(Albert Einstein in a letter to his daughter)
By this time a container of blessed water from our Jordan Feast may have been delivered to you. Thank you to the volunteer drivers! We have such a treasure in this liquid. How marvelous that we can see in this plain tap water a profound sign of our life—shared with all humanity and the cosmos.
As we carry on through these grey days of this covid winter, much like the flame of the Christmas candles representing Christ’s light, this water speaks of hope. It represents our belonging, our value, our unique role in the universe. We have this water every year to remind us that we take part in the wonder of the Trinity manifested at the baptism in the river Jordan. The entire New Testament exists to demonstrate God as Love. Love cannot be single or static. Love spills ecstatically beyond itself to encompass others to create an ever fresh community that incorporates all life: forever vibrant as breath and the pulsing of blood through our veins. You and I and every stranger to us belong to each other and to the community of God.
In the readings this Sunday, we hear about the start of Christ’s teaching and Paul’s reflection on the gifts of grace that we are given through Christ; we have different gifts, but every person’s gift is to serve others. Very simply—we are here for each other. To understand this is to live in love; to be swept into the dynamic community of God. This is our calling.
The blessed water we have is a rain drop in an ocean: nothing itself; everything united. We are the water. Let’s try to take our disappointments, discouragements, shortcomings and insecurities and toss them into a cleansing geyser of love. Refreshed in our vision of God’s grace, we join in the forces that cherish and protect the goodness and diversity of our world.
“God manifests Himself when mercy appears, because that is His face. Jesus becomes the servant of sinners and is proclaimed the Son; He lowers himself upon us and the Spirit descends upon Him. Love calls upon love. It also applies to us: in each act of service, in every work of mercy we perform, God manifests Himself; God sets His gaze upon the world. This applies to us.” (Pope Francis)