Monday of the 7th week of Easter.
Bible Study: Acts 19:1-8, Psalm 68 and John 16:29-33).
“I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. 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. In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus says to us: “Cheer up, I have overcome the world.” In other words, tribulations may come, but victory is assured. As children of God, the battles we fight have already been won on the Cross of Calvary. So we fight not as victims but as victors.
To be happy when everything is going well with you is normal. But to be cheerful and happy when things are not going well is extraordinary – it requires faith in God. Being cheerful may not change the situation immediately, but it changes us first. We begin to see open windows where we thought there were only closed doors.
Like Paul and Silas who were locked up in prison, being cheerful in the midst of crisis gives us a reason to sing instead of crying. In the end, our cheerfulness brings about a manifestation of the Spirit. Dear friends, regardless of what you are facing, be cheerful. Smile!
Do you know that one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit is joy? There is nothing spiritual about being moody or annoyed or depressed. Do not go about with a gloomy appearance carrying past hurts and pains. Learn to forgive and let go immediately. St. Paul would say: “Be angry but do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil” (Ephesians 4:26-27).
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. Note this, they did not simply speak gibberish, they spoke intelligibly in other languages; they spoke words of prophecy. It was because people could understand what they were saying that they knew these were prophetic utterances.
Speaking in tongues is not something we learn, it comes from the Holy Spirit. Speaking in tongues is not the deliberate pronunciation of sounds that do not make meaning to us. Be careful, do not fake it. The gift of speaking in tongues I believe helped the early Christians spread the faith to many lands and people whose languages they did not understand. It is not the only sign of the presence of the Holy Spirit in a person.
Let us pray: Come Holy Spirit, enkindle in us your Sacred fire. Amen.
Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you.