my inmost calm

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Now to today’s thought.

Every day, even during a Christmas vacation, every one of us is confronted with dozens of situations which bring out the best and the worst in us.

Then we all have moods that we struggle to make sense of.

When we finally find a calm moment one of the parishioners or kids does something that winds us up and we react badly.

Just when they are sorted we get a work email that shakes our equilibrium.

Without a doubt we are vulnerable and restless creatures.

With all of this going on in our day we hardly have a chance to consider that temptation and sin are also at work in us. It’s worth giving this a thought since awareness of these provide a key for the one who seeks to live more peacefully.

Today’s first reading from John’s First Letter concludes:

For all that is in the world,
sensual lust, enticement for the eyes, and a pretentious life,
is not from the Father but is from the world.
Yet the world and its enticement are passing away.
But whoever does the will of God remains forever.
1 John 2:12-17

John is stating pretty clearly that we need to make a fundamental choice between two worlds: are we primarily citizens of earth or of heaven?

Keep in mind that at your baptism you became a citizen of Heaven, and have the Heavenly Passport to prove it.

The problem is that we forget this wonderful fact slipping too easily into focussing on the things of earth and this is the root of all our problems.

Living as a citizen of heaven does not mean that I abandon earthly things. Instead when we live with heavenly vision we are able to engage even more fully and appropriately with the things of earth, keeping them in right perspective. With this ultimate perspective we no longer come to our earthly relationships, projects and entertainments expecting them to provide more than they are capable of delivering.

While the people and projects and the ups and downs of every day are important, they are not the things that can provide us with the depth of peace that we desire.

As the hymn popularised by Enya reminds us: “no storm can shake my inmost calm, while to that rock I’m clinging.”

To put it most simply, the choice we get to make dozens of times every day is: Am I going to live this moment without Jesus, or with Jesus?


My life goes on in endless song
Above earth’s lamentation
I hear the real, though far-off hymn
That hails a new creation

Through all the tumult and the strife
I hear its music ringing
It sounds an echo in my soul
How can I keep from singing?

While though the tempest loudly roars
I hear the truth, it liveth
And though the darkness ’round me close
Songs in the night it giveth

No storm can shake my inmost calm
While to that rock I’m clinging
Since love is Lord of heaven and earth
How can I keep from singing?

When tyrants tremble in their fear
And hear their death knell ringing
When friends rejoice both far and near
How can I keep from singing?

In prison cell and dungeon vile
Our thoughts to them are winging
When friends by shame are undefiled
How can I keep from singing?

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