Whenever our interior life becomes caught up in its own interests and concerns, there is no longer room for others, no place for the poor. God's voice is no longer felt, and the desire to do good fades. This is a very real danger for believers, too. Many fall prey to it, and end up resentful, angry, and listless. That is no way to live a dignified and fulfilled life; it is not God's will for us, nor is it the life in the Spirit which has its source in the heart of the risen Christ.
The joy of the Gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus. Those who accept His offer of salvation are set free from sin, sorrow, inner emptiness, loneliness. With Christ, joy is constantly born anew.
Joy is born from the gratuitousness of an encounter! It is hearing someone say, but not necessarily with words: 'You are important to me." Saint Thomas said: 'Bonum est diffusivum sui'-Good spreads. And joy also spreads. Do not be afraid to show the joy of having answered the Lord's call, of having responded to His choice of live and bearing witness to His Gospel in service to the Church. And joy, true joy, is contagious; it is infectious… it impels one forward.
Technological society has succeeded in multiplying occasions of pleasure, yet has found it very difficult to engender joy.
We must restore hope to young people, help the old, be open to the future, spread love. Be poor among the poor. We need to include the excluded and preach peace.
The Gospel is the real antidote to spiritual destitution: wherever we god, we are called as Christians to proclaim the liberating news that forgiveness for sins committed is possible, that God is greater than our sinfulness, that He freely loves us at all times and that we were made for communion and eternal life. The Lord asks us to be joyous heralds of this message of mercy and hope! It is thrilling to experience the joy of spreading this good news, sharing the treasure entrusted to us, consoling broken hearts and offering hope to our brothers and sisters experiencing darkness. It means following and imitating Jesus, who sought out the poor and sinners as a shepherd lovingly seeks his lost sheep.