For the Journey

We have been praying these past weeks about God’s creative and redemptive love. We have also been discovering exactly who it is who has loved so much, so deeply, and for so long.

When you receive a letter or note without a signature, you might be less likely to take it seriously. If you were to receive a nice gift without any signature except for a set of initials, you might be more interested about this benefactor. There is something deep inside us that wants to know more about anybody who might like us, send us cards and gifts, and might actually love us. Who are they and why are they so good to me? What do they want in return? These are the questions that end the first section of the Spiritual Exercises and flow into the second.

We have received deeply the gifts of our having been created and then re-created in the salvific love of Jesus Christ. Who is this God; who is this God-made-man come to us? He comes not anonymously, not jotting just a two letter signature, but Jesus proclaims his name and who he is.

We pray to study Jesus’ signature and to know him as gift and the gifts Jesus offers. Be very aware that each of us has resistances to Jesus’ teachings, Jesus’ ways, and the path of mystery to which he calls us.

As with the men and women with whom Jesus entered into deep intimacy, their questions, their fears, their excuses, their other plans, and their natural reluctance to trust all became part of their encounter and ultimate surrender to Jesus. We ourselves want to know what we are going to be asked to do. We are called to pray this week with these questions, these reluctances, these fears well in hand and heart. They are the places where he met Peter, Nicodemus, the early church, and all the saints. We pray within the truth of our truths. Jesus meets us the way he finds us, but we have to find our fears and distrusts in order to be intimately met.

Out of love we were called into life; out of love we were called from death through sin; out of love we are constantly being called into trusting what real life can be with and alongside Jesus. His call to us is a freedom from and a freedom for. The from we know; the for is the cause of our fear and the platform of our prayer. We pray for the desire to know him and his personal love for us so deeply that, with our fears before us, we can slowly let him take them away one tremor and one tremble at a time.
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