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Advent Reflection Week 3
“When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby stirred in her womb" Lk. 1:41
Mary entered the house of Elizabeth and said hello. The Presence that she carried within her was transmitted to Elizabeth by the sound of her voice. In response, the baby in Elizabeth's womb leapt for joy; he was sanctified by Mary's simple greeting. God's greatest works take place without our doing anything spectacular. They are almost side effects of doing the ordinary things we are supposed to be doing. If you are transformed, everybody in your life will be changed too. There's is a sense in which we create the world in which we live. If you are pouring out love everywhere you go, that love will start coming back; it cannot be otherwise. The more you give, the more you will receive.
Following Mary's example, the fundamental practice for healing the wounds of the false -self system is to fulfill the duties of our job in life. This includes helping people who are counting on us. If prayer gets in the way, there is some misunderstanding. Some devout persons think that if their activities at home or job get in the way of praying, there is something wrong with their activities. On the contrary, there is something wrong with their prayer.
Contemplative prayer enables us to see the treasure of sanctification and the opportunities for spiritual growth that are present day by day in ordinary life. If one is truly transformed, one can walk down the street, drink a cup of tea or shake hands with somebody and be pouring divine life into the world. In Christianity, motivation is everything. When the love of Christ is the principle motivation, ordinary actions transmit divine love. This is the fundamental Christian witness; this is evangelization in its primary form...
The essential thing, if one wishes to spread the Gospel, is the transformation of one's own consciousness. If that happens, and in the degree that it happens, one's ordinary actions become effective in communicating the Mystery of Christ to whoever comes into one's life.
Excerpt from The Mystery of Christ, chapter 1, by Fr. Thomas Keating