Take Heaven. Take Peace. Take Joy!

Sixteenth-Century Franciscan friar, Fra Giovanni wrote this reflection about Christmas. I suspect that both Francis of Assisi and Pope Francis would share his perspective about the Incarnation:

There is nothing that I can give you which you have not,
But there is much that, while I cannot give, you can take.

No heaven can come to us
Unless our hearts find rest in it today.
Take Heaven.

No peace lies in the future,
Which is not hidden in this present instant.
Take Peace.

The gloom of the world is but a shadow,
Behind it, yet within our reach, is joy.
Take Joy!

And so, at this Christmas time,
I greet you with the prayer that for you, now and forever,
The day breaks and the shadows flee away.

While we celebrate Jesus' coming each year on December 25, the Christ is with us each moment; heaven is here if we but see. Peace is likewise "on earth" when our hearts rest in God's love. We can take joy in Christ's love always with us.

May the Peace and Joy of the Incarnation be with us, and may we each spread the love of God today.