I get a bit sensitive when people talk of a docile Christianity without warriors or being paralyzed into inaction because of my insistence on prayer, which I consider that a significant part of prayer is discernment of one's call from God so that one can respond with a "yes" BEFORE jumping into battle or not. I like the way Mark Gordon reported here on Gil Bailie's initial Emmaus Road Initiative presentation: "it wasn’t about getting the words to line up right; it was about being the right person in that place and time." One can only do that by allowing their life to come into focus through prayer and the Holy Spirit. This is Real Action with Life exuberant. This is saying yes to our calling and following through. This is the exaltation of the Cross.
Meditation of the Day -- September 14, 2007
Exaltation of the Cross
Exaltation of the Cross
If you wish to have the light of finding grace, and a heart free from all care, if you wish to curb all harmful temptations, and to be made perfect in the ways of God, do not tarry in running to the cross of Christ. Truly there is no other way for the sons of Christ to manage to find God, and having found him, to hold on to him, but in the life and the way of suffering God and man which…is the Book of Life, the reading of which no one can have access to except through continual prayer. Continued prayer elevates, illumines, and transforms the soul. Illumined by the light perceived in prayer, the soul see clearly the way of Christ prepared and trodden by the feet of the Crucified; running along this way with an expanded heart, it not only distances itself from the weighty cares of the world but rises above itself to taste divine sweetness. ‘then it is set ablaze by divine fire. Thus illumined, elevated, and set ablaze, it is transformed into the God-man. All this is achieved by gazing on the cross in continual prayer.
Hence, my dearest son, fling yourself upon this cross, ask him who died on it for you to enlighten you to know yourself fully, so that plunged deep in the knowledge of your own defects, you can be uplifted to know fully the sweetness of divine goodness which seemed incomprehensible to you when, so full of defects as you were, God lifted you up to divine sonship, and promised to be your Father.
Do not, therefore, be ungrateful toward him, but strive to accomplish in everything the will of so great and so lovable a Father. For if legitimate sons cannot accomplish what pleases the Father, how will the adulterous ones be able to do so? Adulterous sons are the ones who stray from the discipline of the cross through concupiscence of the flesh. Legitimate sons, on the other hand, are the ones who strive to conform themselves in every way to their teacher and Father who suffered for them. They do so by following him in poverty, suffering, and contempt. For certainly, my dear son, these three things are the basis and the fulfillment of all perfection. For in these three, the soul is truly enlightened, perfected and purged and most fittingly prepared for divine transformation.
Blessed Angela of Foligno (+ 1309) was a wife and mother who later became a Franciscan tertiary and an esteemed mystical writer.
tip to Doctors of the Catholic Church and Magnificat