In our day and age of hedonism where the experience of pleasure seems to count for almost everything, a Gospel reading such as the one we have today will probably fall on deaf ears! John reports to us the words of Jesus where he tells us that true joy will come only when we ‘abide in his word, or in other words, keep God’s commandments! This not only seems to imply, but tells us straight out, that human fulfilment and true joy do not result from an anarchic understanding of freedom but an understanding of freedom where we choose to place ourselves under the will of God,  (see Psalm 118/9)knowing that his will is the only way to true happiness for us.

I can here the cries of ‘heresy’ coming from our hedonistic world but I do not care! When Jesus tells us something we can be sure that it is the truth! If it is the truth then it will lead us to true human fulfilment. The consequence of this being the truth is that disobedience to the will of God as a result of following our desires and pleasures cannot and will not lead us to a fulfilling way of life! The choice is yours and mine to make! I suppose it ultimately comes down to trusting in the fact that what God wills for our lives is indeed the best thing possible for us. For me this is simply a given. I believe that God loves me and thus all that he desires for me will be the best for me!

Living a Christian life in today’s world will often mean having to deal with conflicts with the thinking of the world. It is important that we do not give in to the way the world thinks or we will find that our Christian witness will become compromised and ineffective. This would be a tragedy for us as individuals, and the Gospel as a whole. The world needs men and women who will stand up for what they believe as Christians and so present the Gospel to the world in an uncompromised form.

Do I tend to give way to the thinking of the world in the decisions I make concerning my lifestyle? If so, what am I going to do to reverse this situation?

Father, you have created us to receive your love and to be united in love with you. Help me to always choose a way of life that is consonant with this truth.