The Christian family, that is a family where at least one member is baptized and practicing the faith, bears unique relationship with the humiliated Christ – Christ’s humiliation is the Christian family’s glory, Christ loves but He is not loved. So it is with the believer. we must learn to love when we are not loved. the more we learn such love, the closer we have drawn into the heart of the Lord. Only prayer can go to this place. By devotion that allows the heart to pour itself out to the Lord in silence, we follow in the footsteps of our crucified God even in the hidden and difficult to bear moments of marriage and family life. The power of prayer leads us on a pathway to Christ’s humility, the deepest humility ever known. The deeper into humility we plunge with Christ, the more invincible our love for one another and our hope becomes. Prayer takes us into this victory.
Christ’s death on the Cross with his descent into hell, with his resurrection with his ascension into heaven— all of these mysteries of redemption are the mysteries that animate the Christian family. If there are moments of defeat where nothing goes well and every plan runs amiss, an act of faith joins this sorrow to Christ’s victory. Indeed, it was when Christ was most powerless and humiliated that He accomplished his greatest act of praise and won the salvation of humanity. So too when the family is most tried, faith in Christ allows the Holy Spirit to shower down blessings and beatitude in ways our natural power of reason cannot see. A family can go through hell but, by faith in Christ, there is always new reasons for hope.
The Holy Spirit is drawn to the humble but humility is not easy to learn. We learn humility by being brought to our knees. In many ways, the story of the family in the world today is one of the brokenness and betrayal. Without faith, it may be easy to see this as insurmountable and meaningless. The eyes of faith, however, see new opportunities for identification with Christ – for a deeper connection with the mysteries by which He overthrew our hostility to Him. The story of the twelve who betrayed Him and the humiliation of the Cross was prelude to a new birth for all of humanity So the stories of our family prelude a new work that God yearns to do if we will trust in Him. This new work opens to the household of faith that John and Mary shared. Here, at the hearth of Mary’s maternal love for every beloved disciple, the new family that Christ’s death has constituted is open to us.