Tuesday, August 11, 2009
On this Feast Day of St. Clare let us look at ourselves in the light of faith
The Magnificat today had a snippet from Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, Vatican Homilist from his book, Life in Christ: The Spiritual Message of the Letter to the Romans. I found the homily from which the snippet was used for a chapter in the book at this LINK.
The following are just teasers that I hope get you to go to the link and read his great homily.
We Possess (Are Possessed by) God Through Grace
A wonderful new sentiment, the sentiment of” possession,” grows in us where God’s love is concerned; we possess God’s love or, better still, we are possessed by it.
We find ourselves mysteriously caught up in the vortex of the work of the Trinity. We are involved in the incessant motion of reciprocal giving and receiving between the Father and the Son from whose jubilant embrace the Holy Spirit springs, who then brings down to us a spark of this fire of love.
A child doesn’t want to be loved separately, with a different and independent love, but he wants to partake in the love, which unites his parents knowing that this has been the source of his life.
And this is the great revelation: the persons of the Trinity love each other with an infinite love and they allow us to partake in this love! They admit us to the banquet of life; the children of men “feast on the abundance of his house,” he gives them to drink “from the river of his delights” (cf. Psalms 36:9). The theological principle that “grace is the beginning of glory” means precisely that we already possess by faith and as “first fruits” what we shall one day possess, face-to-face and fully, in eternal life: namely, God’s love!
Therefore I do not need to look outside myself for proof that God loves me; I, myself, am the proof; my being is, in itself, a gift. Looking at ourselves in the light of faith we can say, I exist, therefore I am loved! “Being is being loved” (G. Marcel).
This is awesome, isn't it? Oh, just one thing, hardness of heart will turn your possession in and with God into a possession of the spirit of THIS fallen world. Ah, the consequences of ignoring or trivializing God even in the smallest of life choices can amount to being thrown into a vortex of the work of Satan.
What Is There In Life That Is Working To Overpower Us?
St. Paul teaches us how to apply to our everyday life the light of God’s love contemplated so far. The perils and enemies against God’s love that he lists are those he actually experienced himself in his own life: distress, persecution, the sword (cf. 2 Corinthians 11:23 ff.).
He is inviting me to ask myself: what is there in my life that is working to overpower me?
(The Apostle Paul) observes his world with the powers that threatened it at the time: death and its mystery, life as it was then, with all its allurements, the astral powers and the infernal ones which struck such terror into ancient man…We too are invited to do the same: to look at our surrounding and frightening world with the new eyes given us by the revelation of God’s love.
When God wants to give someone an important message for his life, he usually accompanies this with a certain emotion to help the person embrace his word, and this deep feeling is, in its turn, the sign that it is God who is speaking to the soul. Let us therefore ask the Holy Spirit to help us feel deeply moved; let us ask him to grant us feeling that is not superficial.