Father Arsenie Boca said that a sad Christian is like a car driven with the lights turned off through the darkness. Why did the father say so? Is it possible to be happy all the time? Should happiness define the Christian of our time?
I will start telling you a personal experience: During my teenage years and during college I was very introverted and I had many spiritual wounds that determined me to have little confidence. I was very busy with my inner life. I saw my flaws, I wanted more from myself, but I could not do anything to fulfill my dreams… and above all, I was sad.
My biggest wish was to serve God, but I saw that my wish is so far and I discouraged myself.
After long expectations, I received the ordination and I began my mission in the assigned parish. As a priest you are always facing cases where your help is needed even though this sometimes means only a kind or an encouraging word.
What surprised me most was the fact that by trying to help the others, I forgot my problems. I forgot that before I had been sad, pensive and apathetic for so long. I had to give to the others what I did not possess, but what God had plentifully through His amazing love towards us. Through His power people were saved and received spiritual help, and I was alive again.
Why did I tell you this? Because the best solution to get away from our problems, from the sadness which surrounds us, the best solution to lose the burden of our sufferings and failures is to give what we do not have, but what God has plentifully. Step by step we will see that by helping the others, we actually help ourselves. When we embrace and caress the ones beside us, God hold us too in His arms.
Is it hard to believe?
The human being is made for love and communion, and the sin or selfishness locks our heart. We become deaf to the sufferings of others and the depression burdens us. But is impossible to be sad or sorrowful when you are helping others, when you show kindness and compassion. You do not have where to give from? Just try! Whatever you do, do it in the name of God, and He will cover up your inability to love and will heal you.
The source of joyfulness is God, and when we ask His help for our fellows, He changes our lives too.
Try and see…
(Fr. Alexandru Nicodim)