THIS is no gratuitous, baseless pursuit. We are not indulging in some fantasy when we exert the effort to make Christ alive in us. In the first place, because Christ himself is alive. He continues to be with us and is, in fact, actively intervening in our lives. We are not in some make-believe world.
It’s us who have the problem since we tend to ignore him. It’s the same problem once articulated by St. Augustine: “You were with me, but I was not with you.” And even the things around all point to us about Christ’s constant interventions in our lives. Still, we fail to be aware of him.
Christ, of course, died, but then he rose again, never to die again. And even if he rose again, he after so many days ascended into heaven. He should not be around anymore. But, no, he continues to be here, this time in the Holy Spirit!
Let’s remember that before he went up to heaven, he promised the coming of the Holy Spirit who would bring to us everything that Christ did and said. More than that, the Holy Spirit brings Christ alive in us.
This is how God works. The entire trinity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is involved in this continuing divine effort to bring us back to where we came from—that is, from God himself in whose image and likeness we have been created. And God in his work cannot be frustrated despite the mess we make.
We just have to exercise our faith to the hilt. With it we enter into a reality that goes beyond what we simply can see and touch and understand. With it we can feel at home even with mysteries which, by the way, abound in our life since we are not confined only to the sensible and material realities. Our world includes the spiritual and the supernatural.
Exercising our faith means constantly dealing with the Holy Spirit. Dealing with the Holy Spirit involves certain requirements, like deepening our knowledge of the truths of our faith by meditating on the gospel, studying the catechism, following the teachings of the Pope, etc.
It also involves constant spiritual struggle against our weaknesses, temptations and sins. It certainly involves developing virtues so that we gradually can be more perceptive of the promptings of the Holy Spirit.
Also indispensable is the recourse to the sacraments which are the very channels of grace that Christ himself instituted so that his presence and the effectiveness of his redemptive work on us can be perpetuated till the end of time.
This is how we can make Christ alive in us, Christ who will always understand us even if we many times fail him. We just have to do our part, and do it as best as we can, even to the point of heroism and martyrdom. This, in fact, is also the extent Christ does to reach us and to save us.
If we correspond actively to what Christ has done for us, we in the Holy Spirit can truly manage to make Christ alive in us. It is really just a matter of being consistent with our faith that brings with it the other virtues of hope and charity. In that way, we would be dealing with the Holy Spirit who will bring Christ to us alive.