“Jesus loves joyous hearts. He loves a soul that is always smiling.”
– St. Thérèse of Lisieux
This week we celebrate the feast of St. Thérèse of Lisieux, the Carmelite nun who chose to love our Lord through the little things in life. It is from St. Thérèse that Mother Teresa chose her name because she too desired to live the “little way.”
Both St. Thérèse and Mother Teresa lived lives of great joy, in spite of their external and internal suffering. Their deep sense of joy stemmed from contemplating God’s love for them and recognizing the gift of serving Jesus through the smallest acts of charity. The knowledge of being loved by God fueled their joy, and likewise, ignited love and joy in those they encountered.
Mother Teresa saw joy as the secret in reaching and serving souls… smiles and laughter that come from a heart of joy and love will always reach into someone’s soul, no matter how miserable this someone may be.
Mother Teresa knew that Jesus loved a joyful giver so she was happy to serve Christ in the distressing disguise of the poor.
I think it’s very easy to forget that God upholds each of us in love at every moment – but this fact alone is something to be extremely grateful and outwardly joyful about! Let us take a step back for a moment and remember how much we are loved by our Heavenly Father… and begin this week with joy!
Challenge: “Make it a special point to become God’s sign of happiness in your community.”
– St. Mother Teresa
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