Grace is often seen as something OUTSIDE us. It is in the way we speak and in our every day lives. We use rosaries from Rome (blessed by Pope Francis himself!) as if a rosary blessed by Pope Francis is somehow more holy than one blessed by the local priest. We get water from Lourdes, stones from Israel (where Jesus walked). We have different saints for different needs as if there is a particular specialization of grace coming from particular saints (i.e. Patron Saint of Illnesses, or Lost Things, or even of Finding a Parking Space!).

Yes, grace is external, in that it comes from God.

But it can also be seen as the INDWELLING OF GOD WITHIN US. We usually see it in hindsight: Hope amidst Difficulties, Contentment amidst Deprivation, Love amidst the feeling of being shortchanged, Forgiveness despite wrongs, or Peace. Grace is external in that it comes from God. But it is also intensely internal, in that God dwells within us.

Today, I ask you to meditate on the song How Lovely Is Your Dwelling Place. You are God’s dwelling place. You are a sacrament of Emmanuel — that God made his dwelling with us!

1. How do you understand grace in your life right now? Be aware about your understanding of grace because this gives you an insight into how you see and treat God—or Goodness—in your life.

2. What in your life right now makes you feel the conviction that hope, love, joy, DWELLS in you?

Fr. Arnel Aquino, SJ

How lovely is Your dwelling place oh Lord
Mighty God, Lord of all. (2x)

Even the lowly sparrow finds a home for her brood
And the swallow, a nest for herself
Where she may lay her young;
In your altars my King and my God. REF:

Blessed are they whose dwelling is your own, Lord of Peace.
Blest are they refreshed by springs and by rain
When dryness daunts and scathes.
Behold my shield, my King and my God. REF:

I would forsake a thousand other days anywhere
If i could spend one day in your courts, belong to You alone.
My strength are You alone.
My glory, my King and my God. REF:

Oh lovely Your dwelling place oh Lord
Mighty God, Lord of all.

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