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December 1991

Here I am! I am coming to obey your will. (Heb. 10:9)

These words are a verse from Psalm 40. The writer of the letter to the Hebrews associates them with the Son of God's response to the Father. The writer wants to emphasise the love with which the Son of God became man in order to do the work of redemption in obedience to the will of the Father.

These words come from a passage where the writer wants to show how Jesus' sacrifice is infinitely superior to the sacrifices of the old law. In these sacrifices people offered animals, or something else that was external to themselves, to God. Jesus, on the other hand, through his immense love, lived the whole of his life on earth offering to the Father his own will, the whole of himself.

Here I am! I am coming to obey your will.

This Word of Life offers us a key to understand Jesus' life. It helps us to grasp the deepest aspect of his life and the golden thread which links together all its stages: his infancy, his life at Nazareth, the temptations, his choices and his public life right up to his death on the cross. In each moment, in every situation, Jesus tried to do only one thing, the will of the Father. He did it in a radical way, doing nothing that was outside the will of God and rejecting even the most attractive propositions which were not in complete harmony with God's will.

Here I am! I am coming to obey your will.

This Word of Life makes us understand the great lesson which Jesus taught us with his life. The most important thing is to do not our own will but the will of the Father; to become capable of saying 'no' to ourselves so as to say 'yes' to him.

True love for God does not lie in beautiful words, ideas or feelings, but in practical obedience to his commandments. The sacrifice of praise which he expects from us, is the loving gift of what is most dear to us and what we feel most belongs to us: our own will.

Here I am! I am coming to obey your will.

How shall we live the Word of Life this month? This is another Word of Life which highlights how the Gospel goes against the current of the world in so far as it opposes our most deeply rooted tendency to seek our own will and follow our own instincts and feelings.

This Word is also one of those which most go against the grain for people today. We live in an age of exaltation of the individual ego and of personal autonomy, where freedom is an end in itself, self fulfilment is seen as the satisfaction of needs and desires and one's own pleasure is the yardstick in making choices and is considered to be the secret of happiness. But we are well aware of the disastrous consequences to which this way of thinking leads.

This approach to life, based on seeking one's own will, is strongly opposed by that of Jesus, who was intent on fulfilling the will of God, with all the marvellous effects this has.

So let's try to live the Word for this month by choosing the will of the Father, making it the norm and the driving force of our whole life, as Jesus did.

We will set out on a divine adventure for which we will be ever grateful to God. In doing so, we will become saints and the love of God will spread to many hearts.

Chiara Lubich

 

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Word of Life, 50 Dafforne Road, London, SW17 8TZ, UK., or
Word of Life, Ardmory, 30 Langside Drive, Glasgow, G43 2QQ. UK.

The Word of Life is published by the Focolare Movement