It is 22nd December 2018. The readings are from 1 Samuel 1:24-28; and the Gospel from Luke 1:46-56. A genuine gratefulness brings out joyfulness in our life. We are invited to reflect about two grateful women who sang the song of thanksgiving and joy. Most of us ask the Lord for this and that all the time. Having obtained the favour from the Lord, very often we forget the giver of the gift that is God. Gratefulness is the pleasing sacrifice of the soul to the Lord. We are swift to ask the Lord for gifts and blessings yet we conveniently either postpone or delay in offering the thanksgiving God deserves duly. At times we grumble and complain and even give the minimum to satisfy our conscience not out of generosity. Christmas is all about making sacrifices to share gifts with others. Gifts are only material expression of a grateful heart. The Lord has done wondrous things in our life personally and as a community. Giving the gift back to the Lord and for the common good is the best way of being grateful to the Lord. In the first reading, we have soul stirring example from the mother of Samuel. As she promised to the Lord, she fulfilled the promise by bring the little boy Samuel to the temple to serve the Lord at the very early age. “For this child I prayed; and the Lord has granted me the petition that I made to him. Therefore, I have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives, he is given to the Lord.” She left him there for the Lord.” (1 Sam 1:28). This is the example of gratitude par excellence. Grateful Hannah remains the model of gratitude to the Lord. We are all hungry for the gifts of God during this time of Christmas Octave. God is prepared to give us God’s only Son Jesus as the supreme gift. It is indeed the time to be grateful for all that we have received from the Lord. As the Magnificat of the Old Testament acknowledges the great things that God had done in the life of Hanna, through God’s kindness and mercy. When we have pride, power and possessions, we seem to be forgetting to thank the Lord. Let everyone us make effort to share the gifts with those in need. The responsorial Psalm praises, “My heart exults in the Lord my saviour.” (1 Sam.2:1). In the Gospel we have Magnificat from Mother Mary as a hymn of praise, thanksgiving and joy for all that God done to Her and to the entire humanity. The poem of Mary is the liberation Song that comes out in a thankful God. It was a spontaneous outburst of the soul of Mary. Even if we cannot compose such deeply theological and profoundly spiritual Hymn, let out life become the expression of thankfulness. Let us begin to live like a grateful people to the Lord expressed in humble service to the others. May you have a good day. God bless you.

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