If Abraham did not say YES to God and leave his fatherland to the land God would show him, the history of our salvation would have been totally different. If our Blessed Mother had said NO to God’s request that she be the Mother of our Savior, there would have been no Christmas! The story would have been different. Obviously it would have been catastrophic for humanity. Though she was full of grace, God still had to ask her to agree to do what He was planning to do with and through her. Thank God she said YES to God! Her YES unleashed unprecedented events in history, for her Yes to God brought Jesus into the world, and our salvation intended by God before time became a reality. The whole world is caught up in the joy and merriment of Christmas because of that YES Our Blessed Mother said to God in word and deed. Thanks to her YES to God, we live in a free world defined and guided by the principles and values taught by the Prince of Peace! Once a soul learns to say YES to God, God on His part grants her the grace to bear the consequences, for the world is used to saying NO to God. And so, when we say YES to God, we surely encounter opposition, often very fierce and vitriolic!

Whenever we say YES to God everything changes: life blooms, peace is given a chance, the poor are served, forgiveness cleanses the heart, love reigns supreme, and freedom becomes truly free! To say Yes to God is to let the light of heaven shine upon us and scatter the darkness that often results from our arrogant pursuit of selfish desires without reference to the King of the Universe. When Mother Teresa said YES to God, divine light shined upon Calcutta and other slums of India and the world. Her YES brought millions of abandoned children back to life; her YES to God also brought so much goodness lying untapped in the hearts of many men and women willing to give their lives to serve and care for the poor and the abandoned. The world is better today because of those men and women who chose to say YES to God! But, when Hitler said NO to God, the consequence was death: the holocaust and a World War! Everything depends on where we stand: YES or NO to God, and each response has consequences.

Young people today struggle with having to live a chaste life, or avoid premarital sex and all other important values. Sometimes they are humiliated or taunted by their peers. But as long as they say YES to these values and have the courage of the Holy Spirit to live by them, they certainly will experience positive changes in their lives. Only YES to God brings life, true peace, true freedom and authentic fulfillment in life. When we say YES to God, He grants us the grace to say yes each time an occasion arises. Spiritual growth means constantly learning to say yes to God. This is what it means to do God’s will. It is the life Our Blessed Mother lived; it is the life Our Lord left us to follow. It is what the saints lived. But when we get used to saying NO to God and yes to selfish desires, then we will perpetually live in the pain and suffering that such a life brings. Most importantly, a life of NO to God is an impoverished one, irrespective of what one appears to have achieved in life. This season of grace calls each one of us back to learn to live like Our Blessed Mother, saying YES to God so we can live, and through us, God will bring life and love to others.