On Easter Sunday, our homilist, Father Lucio Choi, encouraged us to follow a GPS each day. Quickly clarifying that he was not referring to the widely used Global Positioning Systems used in physical navigation, Father proceeded to introduce an acronym to encourage us to enter the Easter season focused on three simple words.

The first letter in Father Lucio’s acronym for spiritual navigation was G for Gratitude. As Easter people, we must constantly develop a genuine appreciation for the gift of salvation granted by Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection. We can begin to focus on living a life of gratitude as we wake each morning and thank God for a new day.

Even when times are difficult or experiences challenge our faith, we have much for which to be grateful. Personally, I am thankful for my family and friends, my health, my job, and my home; yet, even if I were to suffer loss in one of these areas, I have been granted eternal life in Christ and this I cannot take lightly.

Furthermore, even in times of suffering and loss, each day stills greet me with fresh air to breathe, flowers to smell, people to cross my path, and songs ever-present in my heart. I have 24 hours in every day to notice and give thanks for the many ways God presents himself to me.

The letter P stands for Prayer. Without hesitation, I must say that I find prayer the single most effective method avenue through which to problem-solve, lessen anxiety, and become more focused in life. Of course, my life is not perfect, and I make mistakes more often than I care to count; however, beginning each day by talking to God reminds me that he is in charge.

Additionally, I am convinced that many people I care about have received healing graces – physical, mental, emotional, or all three - because of prayer. God’s voice is audible when I simply place myself in a prayerful mindset - deliberately, first thing in the morning and, in passing, many times throughout the day.

The final letter in Father Lucio’s version of GPS stands for Sharing. Paul and Barnabas were commanded by the Lord, “I have made you a light to the Gentiles that you many be an instrument of salvation to the ends of the earth” (Acts 13:47). Just as the first Christians were called to share the light of Christ with others and be “instruments of salvation,” so are we.

We cannot keep the light of Christ hidden. We know the story of his resurrection, and the ways in which he revealed himself in the catching of the fish and in the breaking of the bread. How can we possibly keep these wonderful stories of the foundation of our beliefs to ourselves? Even when it is not easy to speak of our faith in public circles, making it known that going to Mass is a weekly priority by merely planning activities around it can speak silently to others and share the good news in ways we may never fully recognize.

According to Wikipedia, GPS is a “global navigation satellite system that provides geolocation … to a GPS receiver anywhere on or near the earth.” Perhaps Father Lucio’s spiritual GPS is not as different from the physical GPS systems as I initially thought.

First, we can Globally (“to the ends of the earth”) express our Gratitude for the Gospel by greeting each person we meet with a smile, and by openly speaking words of appreciation, charity, generosity, optimism, and faith. 

Secondly, the Positioning of Prayer, kneeling or closing our eyes peacefully whenever possible, to centre ourselves on Christ, will lead to greater awareness of his presence in our world. We need to position our lives, with our compasses pointing towards him, and the only way to do so is to speak and listen to him through daily prayer.

Finally, the System of Sharing should be the unspoken motto of every Easter person. Sharing our gratitude, our prayers, our time, talent and treasure, and sharing our faith in all that we do, will lead us all in the right direction.

Regardless of our travel paths, God – our Receiver – tracks our whereabouts as we navigate this life and ultimately find the way home.