I really understand that the disciples of Jesus didn't comprehend his mission and felt very frightened by his prediction of his passion and death. It makes sense to me that they were resistant to going to Jerusalem with him. His words to them, however, are worthy of some prayerful meditation.
If we let ourselves come into God's presence consciously, and rest there for a moment, we can begin our meditation with its proper first prelude. God is Love and we can pause to experience that Love make its home in us and brings us peace. The second prelude would be to ask for what we desire in this prayer. Here it would be appropriate to ask for the grace to be open to the words of Jesus, addressed to me, in my life as it is now. It will be important to take the few moments it takes to sincerely ask to be given the deep experience of Jesus' calling me, calming me, offering me what I need to be his disciple.
If you wish to follow me, you must deny yourself, take
up your cross and follow me.
For if you wish to save your life you will lose it.
But, if you lose your life for my sake, and for the
sake of the Gospel, you will save it.
What profit is there for you to gain the whole world
and forfeit your life?
Thank you, Lord, for this brief opportunity to hear you speak to me so directly. Thank you for this clear call to freedom. You really do love me and desire to protect me from my self-destruction. I ask, as Ignatius prayed, "Give me your love and your grace and I will be rich enough, and ask for nothing more."
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