The Prophet Isaiah: 66:10-14 ~ Oh, that you may suck fully of the milk of her comfort, that you may nurse with delight at her abundant breasts!… As nurslings, you shall be carried in her arms, and fondled in her lap; as a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; in Jerusalem you shall find your comfort.
Psalm 66: Let all the earth cry out to God with joy!
St. Paul’s letter to the Galatians: 6:14-18 ~ From now on, let no one make troubles for me; for I bear the marks of Jesus on my body.
The Gospel According to St. Luke: 10:1-20 ~ Go on your way; behold, I am sending you like lambs among wolves.
Today, we heard how intimate God is with us. For many of us, we deflect in the light of such love. God invites us to crawl up into God’s lap like a child finds peace in mother’s lap. God delights in each and every one of us. We are God’s beloved.
Last August, when I came up to Maryland to attend Loyola University, I came kicking and screaming. Of course it was the best place for me, but at the time I felt like I was being sent away into isolation. I had no place to stay. Jesus always sent his disciples out by twos, but I could not understand why I was sent alone. Little did I know that Jesus was my partner. I wrote the following on August 31st:
I am broken, humbled and a mess.
Now, what do you wish to do with me?
It seems that anywhere I attempt to turn
I get swatted or smacked around.
Between losing my license and botching my interview with Father Jim…
I wonder what you see in me at all.
And yet I know in the depths of my being,
It is you showing me another corner hidden of my soul,
Nurture and sustain me O Beloved
Let me never think or imagine I am less than your beloved.
You chose me.
You call me.
“My sacrifice, a contrite spirit… a broken humble heart you will not spurn.”
And here I am before you ,
Wounded but not dead, . . . gratitude . . . I think.
Give me peace and joy; give me more love and hope
Allow me to share in your suffering,. . . but please be there when I break.
I am a coward and scared… and full of anxiety
Three messages from God span the Scriptures:
“I am with you.”
“I love you.”
This is a mantra to breathe in… and breathe out…
“A true Christian,” Blessed john Cardinal Neuman wrote once, “may almost be defined as one who has a ruling sense of God’s presence within oneself.”
I slowly began to realize that
I am new wine skin.
The church today is old wine skin.
Both are good.
I am new wine.
I kept wanting to become new wine placed in old wine skins.
Jesus was placed as new wine into old wine skins.
He bursts with water and wine…
St. Anselm (1033-1109), although he was a bishop of the church, was exiled twice. He writes what I think and experience about my intimate relationship with God.
“My soul stands on tiptoe to see more, but apart from what it has seen already, it sees nothing but darkness. Of course it does not see darkness, because there is not darkness in you, but it sees that it can see no further because of the darkness in itself. “
“O supreme and inaccessible light, O complete and blessed truth, how far you are from me, even though I am so near to you! How remote you are from my sight, even though I am present to yours!”
“You are everywhere in your entirety, and yet I do not see you; in you I move and have my being, and yet I cannot approach you. You are within me and around me, and yet I do not perceive you.”
“O God, let me know you and love you so that I may find my joy in you; and if I cannot do so fully in this life, let me at least make progress every day, until at last that knowledge, love and joy come to me in all their plentitude.”
So does Jesus send us out to do his work? Or does Jesus send us so that we walk with him as he brings us deeper into the love and soul of God?
Jesus assures me of three truths:
“I am with you.”
“I love you.”
Even though Jesus might send us out like lambs among wolves, he will never let us perish! He loves us too much for that to happen. Just like a parent, he would rather forfeit heaven if we were not to be with him in heaven. Do you realize how much God loves YOU???
I heard the voice of Jesus say,
“Come unto me and rest; Lay down, thou weary one, lay down thy head upon my breast.”
I came to Jesu as I was, so weary, worn and sad;
I found in him a resting place, and he has made me glad.