FULLY HUMAN, FULLY ALIVE

Monday, 4th Week of Easter             

            “I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly.”

            St. Irenaeus said, “The glory of God is a human being who is fully alive.” What is the portrait of the person who is fully human, fully alive? By way of a general description, fully alive people are those who are using all of their human faculties, powers, and talents. They are using them to the full.

            This is how John Powell, in his book “Fully Human, Fully Alive,” describes fully alive people – in six general terms:

            “They are constructive rather than destructive in their words and actions.” Everything they say and do serves as “good news” – in the sense that it helps others attain the good.

            “They are flexible rather than rigid in their attitudes.” They are open to everything that will help them and others grow.

            “They are capable of constant and satisfying relationships.” They always reach out to others to build better relationships.

            “They are relatively free from the physical and psychological symptoms produced by stress.” They do not allow themselves to get sick due to too much stress – too much worry and anxiety.

            “They perform well, in reasonable proportion to their talents.” They use their giftedness, not just for themselves, but for the common good.

            “They are adaptable and confident when change is thrust upon them or when they have to make a decision that will change the course of their lives.” Hindi sila natatakot sa mga pagbabago na hinihingi ng panahon.

            The Greek phrase used for “having it more abundantly” means “to have a super-abundance of a thing.” (William Barclay) The “abundant life” the Lord is offering us – the kind of life he wants to share with us – is none other than a life that is full of grace. A life that is full of God’s grace. What is the definition of grace? The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines grace as “a participation in the life of God.” This is the kind of life the Lord Jesus wants us to have when he says, “I came so that you might have life and have it more abundantly.”

            Let us ask the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who is full of grace, that we too may be filled with God’s grace. May the example of Mary inspire us always to seek the abundant life or the fullness of life – by allowing God to pour out his grace upon us.

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