He meets us wherever we are, even in our distance and loneliness, and opens up for us the ways of hope. He summons us, and He vivifies within us the capacity to respond, to move forward with Him.
If He were not with us, how could we possibly live? Even our greatest efforts would lead to frustration, breaking against the walls of our own limitations, our apparent insignificance in a vast, overbearing universe, and our insuperable flaws.
We didn't bring ourselves into being, and we don't know what to do with the inexhaustible longing of our hearts. We find ourselves broken but we can't fix ourselves. If He were not with us, we could not escape our own solitude and sadness.
But He is with us. Jesus. He has come to dwell with us. He knows us even before we realize it, and He always knows us more deeply than we know ourselves. He looks upon each of us with an ardor and a compassion that is infinitely greater than the way we see our own selves, or one another.
He is present, generating us, sustaining us, redeeming us, calling us, empowering us, attracting us, drawing us to His embrace.
We must never give in to discouragement, never give up, never let cynicism suffocate our hope or silence the plea for a worthy and meaningful existence, for happiness, fulfillment, communion -- this plea that is always crying out from the deepest places within us.
He is listening. He hears us crying out. He understands our cries, our sorrows, our need.
This is something to remember in the midst of the many necessary struggles of life, the very genuine efforts for justice and healing, respect and love, work and growth. We must remember again and again that His love for us is a real fact. And we must let His Spirit work within our hearts the liberating response of gratitude and trust.
Everything else that matters has its roots here.