Today is Guadete (Rejoice) Sunday. Today the candle on the wreath is rose, not purple as on the other Sundays of Advent; to express the joy felt at the nearness of the Lord. Some people seem to be happy by nature; others melancholic by nature. As Pope Francis as been saying lately, however, Christians must be people of joy. “Joy comes with the morning” as Scripture says. Each day we have the chance to choose and live out joy, happiness.
Three things about happiness: first, happiness is right now. We convince ourselves that life will be better when we get married, have a baby, then another. Then we are frustrated that the kids are not old enough and we will be more content when they are. After that we are frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We will certainly be happy when they are out of that stage. We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together. The truth is there is no better time to be happy than right now.
Second, ‘If you are happy, let your face know’. Maybe we could begin to be more joyful by taking a peek in the mirror and asking ourselves: does my face look like the face of someone who has heard the good news of the Gospel, namely that I am loved unconditionally by God?
Third, joy will come to us if we set about actively trying to create it for others. If I go about my life demanding that others carry me rather than seeking to carry them; feeding off others rather than feeding them; demanding that others meet my needs rather than trying to meet theirs, joy will never find me no matter how hard I party or try to crank up good cheer.
(Adapted from ACP)