Advent is a season of joy and celebration. The preparation for Christmas is evident when we look around us. We see friends and family involved in cleaning homes, decorating their homes, Christmas trees, singing carols, Christmas colours in every malls etc. Apart from the external preparation, how can we prepare our hearts for Christmas?
What did Jesus do for us? He DIED for us so that we can live! Yes, it is time for us to examine our hearts and introspect on our lives. Is there anything in us that is stopping us from living Christ in this world? I can see plenty in me! We could look at some areas in our life that will help us prepare our hearts for Jesus.
This Christmas season, we should make an effort to die to the capital sins in our life. Let us examine each of these carefully.
- Pride – Let’s strive to be humble and know that it’s only His grace that we need, to do anything and to give glory to Him alone.
- Envy – Let’s strive for brotherly love to feel tender affection for the progress of one another.
- Greed – Let’s strive to be content with what we have.
- Sloth – Let’s strive to be diligent to do the right things at the appropriate times.
- Gluttony – Let’s strive to exercise self-restraint in the face of temptation or desire.
- Anger – Let’s strive for endurance and to forgive when faced with difficulties.
- Lust – Let’s strive to be chaste in our mind, words, body and action.
Let’s strive to die to these sins.
“Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.” John 12:24
Let us die to ourselves, so that the life of Christ may flow in us. Let us be able to say like John the Baptist,
“He must increase; I must decrease.”
I struggled to overcome these capital sins, especially pride and envy, but when I approached the confessional and confessed my sins, including my nature to be proud and be jealous of those around me, God gave me the grace to overcome these sins. Every time I struggle with these sins, I know my God is ever willing to help me.
Let us reflect if we repeatedly fall prey to certain capital sins? If we do, let us take it to confession. Further, if we have missed an opportunity to die to ourselves today, let us not miss the next opportunity.
Lord my God, You died for me, so that I may have life in abundance. Teach me to die to myself so that your life flows in me and thereby I live my life desiring your will and not mine. Holy Spirit, help me to overcome every temptation. Give me the grace to die to myself every day. Amen.
So if you ask me how can we prepare our hearts for Christmas? There is no better way than to imitate Christ!