Sunday, December 21, 2008

marymajor's Advent Calendar: December 24

December 24

Have faith with love, for love without faith you cannot have.

It could be that you believe Christ has come, yet not love Christ. But it cannot be that you love Christ, yet affirm that Christ has not come.

Therefore, let you have faith with love...You who love Christ, love one another: Love your friends, love your enemies. Let this not be a burden for you. What can you lose, where you gain so much?

Love such as that we find also in sheep and sparrows. You know how sparrows and swallows love their mates, how both will hatch their eggs, and both feed the young with a certain sweet and natural goodness, without thought of recompense. The sparrow will not say: 'I feed my young, so that when I am old, they will feed me.' It has no such thought. It loves freely, and nourishes freely. It bestows the love of a parent, looking for no return.

But let you spread wide your love. Let this love grow... Have faith in God. First love God. Extend your love to God; and seize whomever you can for God.

Turning then to the Lord our God, let us as best we can give thanks with all our hearts, beseeching Him that in His goodness He will graciously hear our prayers and by His power drive evil from our thoughts and actions, increase our faith, guide our minds, grant us His holy inspirations, and bring us to joy without end through His Son our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

- St. Augustine