Posted tagged ‘Jesus’

A Knocking…

November 11, 2015

Behold, I stand at the door and knock.
If any man listens to My Voice
and opens the door to Me,
I will come in to him
and will sup with him,
and he with Me
~Revelation 3:20

Spiritual Communion
is simply answering
the Divine Lover’s
insistent knock
at the door of my heart,
that He might come in and dine
with me
as He so ardently desires.

A Prayer of Spiritual Communion
I believe You, O Jesus, are in the Most Holy Sacrament!
I love You and desire You.
Come into my heart; I embrace You.
O never leave me!
May the burning and most sweet power of Your love,
O Lord Jesus Christ,
I beseech You,
absorb my mind,
that I may die through love of Your love,
who was graciously pleased to die
through love of my love. Amen.
~ St. Francis of Assisi

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Jesus Wouldn’t Drink The Drugged Cup

May 19, 2014

Jesus had a cup to drink.

You do not know what you are asking.
Can you drink of the cup I am to drink of?
~Matthew 20:22

Father, if it is Your will, take this cup from Me;
yet not My will but Yours be done.
~Luke 22:42

So do we.

From the cup I drink of, you shall drink
~Matthew 20:23

He took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them.
“All of you must drink from it,” He said,
“for this is My Blood, the Blood of the covenant,
to be poured out in behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins.”
~Matthew 26:27-28

But there are cups…and cups.

they tried to give Him wine drugged with myrrh,
but He would not take it
~Mark 15: 23

The world will always offer us a drugged cup.
It comes in many forms
(whatever earthly thing you turn to for relief).
Ultimately it degrades us.

Jesus refused to drink the drugged cup.
It wasn’t His cup.

It isn’t ours either.

Lord, deliver me from the drugged cup!

Stations of the Cross: Faithfulness Under Fire

October 26, 2012

I offered the Stations for a leader
who was suffering for implementing Truth…

1st Station: Jesus is condemned to death
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world
(at this point in each Station, I kiss the ground,
as I would if I were in Jerusalem, walking the Via Dolorosa–
which is what the Stations are meant to represent)

Jesus stood firm in the face of accusation, condemnation.
He didn’t lash out. He didn’t back down.
He stood His ground,
exemplifying what He taught about turning the other cheek,
giving your cloak and tunic, going the extra mile.
He’s trustworthy.
He means what He says.
He doesn’t change with the tide of public opinion.
You can count on Him.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

2nd Station: Jesus takes up His Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Jesus doesn’t make idle threats.
He knows the consequences of His choices
and is fully prepared to embrace them,
to follow through for our sake.
He has courted the cross.
Now He embraces its weight.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

3rd Station: Jesus falls the first time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

God doesn’t limit Himself to success.
It’s much easier to only take on things you know you can handle,
things over which you have control.
God takes on all sinners,
knowing that with some He will fail–
they will cast themselves into hell
despite all His efforts to rescue them.
He could just leave them to their own devices,
but He doesn’t.
He gives them the freedom to make a failure of Him.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

4th Station: Jesus meets His mother
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Those who love
suffer when their loved ones see them suffer.
Jesus knew His suffering would redound on His Blessed mother,
and it broke His Heart to put her through that,
but He would not let Himself be blackmailed by that suffering either.
He would be true as an arrow, come what may.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

5th Station: Simon of Cyrene is forced to help Jesus carry the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

The suffering continues to rebound on others.
Mary was willing.
Simon was not.
Blame pressed upon the Just One-
“See how Your stubbornness is causing all these people to suffer?
Are You proud of Yourself for instigating all this oppression and pain?!
You’ve got to back down now, You cad!”
But Jesus can see higher and deeper than this.
He knows the price of capitulation
-for all involved-
and the rewards of redemption.
He will not be swayed.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

6th Station: Veronica wipes the Face of Jesus
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

We’ve seen what God will not give
-He won’t change truth to suit our desires-
but that doesn’t mean His hands are closed.
Quite the contrary.
To those open to receive
He gives more than we could ask or imagine-
His very self.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

7th Station: Jesus falls a second time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

“Souls are falling into hell like snowflakes” (message of Fatima)
Souls are falling, falling, falling into sin.
While there’s life, there’s hope-we can repent and go on.
But we are not guaranteed another breath.
The falls of Jesus cry urgently:
“Repent and be saved!”

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

8th Station: Jesus meets the weeping women of Jerusalem
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It’s stressful to deal with weeping women,
with those whose reason is clouded by emotional distress,
but our Savior wades right in and speaks truth.
He redirects their distress toward a constructive end:
“Weep for yourselves and for your children!”

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

9th Station: Jesus falls a third time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

[The man of faith] has no trouble
subordinating all his projects and hopes
to the unfathomable designs
of a God who often uses failure even better than success
to bring about the good of souls.
– Dom Jean-Baptiste Chautard, O.C.S.O.
The Soul of the Apostolate

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

10th Station: Jesus is stripped of His garments
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Stripped-of everything.
Every shred of human dignity, of respect, of honor, torn away.
Nothing left but base contempt and condemnation.
Still He remains faithful,
for He cannot, will not deny Himself.
You can’t change Truth
(thank God!)

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

11th Station: Jesus is crucified
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It’s amazing how far man is capable of going
-how far I am capable of going-
with passions unchecked.
To dare to crucify God!
But surely God wouldn’t let Himself be crucified (would He?!)
-must be an imposter (so we’re justified in crucifying Him).
How abysmally we underestimate the power of God.
How tragically we apply to Him our own vices,
He Whose weakness so far surpasses our greatest power;
Whose folly surpasses our most sublime wisdom.
Holy is the Lord!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

12th Station: Jesus dies on the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It is His generosity that resists our greed,
His boundless love that restrains our hostility.
He will not leave us to our own lusts.
He’s dying to deliver us from ourselves.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

13th Station: Jesus is taken down from the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Divine strength is made perfect in weakness,
in dependence on others to empty the cross of its precious load.
God shares the credit as He shares the crime.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

14th Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

He’s done His part.
He’s shown the way.
It’s up to us now-with Him living within us,
equipping us to do what He has done.
There are things worth dying for…
principally SOULS.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Revelation Unveiled: Have You Died?

May 22, 2012

St. John fell at Jesus’ feet as though dead (see Revelation 1:17).

Revelation 17:1, 19:10; 21:9 & 22:8 refer to John falling down to worship one of the angels who held the bowls filled with the seven plagues–
but each time the prostration seems to have been voluntary,
and the angels stopped him, telling him to get up, to worship God alone.

In Revelation 1:17, John falls down as though dead
not typically a voluntary thing!
And Jesus doesn’t stop John or tell him to get up.
He simply reaches out His right hand, touches him,
tells him not to fear, and gives him a mission:
“Now write what you see.”

There’s an element of resurrection here.
Given that John’s falling as though dead
was a direct consequence of seeing Jesus
–and experiencing the sword coming from His mouth!–
one could propose that John was pierced, penetrated,
slain by that sword
(as we should be every time we encounter this living Word).

In some sense, he died.

Nor was he resuscitated.
He didn’t go back to the same old life he had before,
to doing his own thing.
What he did during and after that vision
was purely the King’s business–
a whole new life.

That’s what Baptism is.

Do you not know
that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus
were baptized into His death?
We were buried therefore with Him by Baptism
into death,
so that as Christ was raised from the dead
by the glory of the Father,
we too might walk in newness of life
-Romans 6:3-4

The Baptized have died.
Our natural way of life, our “old self”
is dead.

I have been crucified with Christ;
it is no longer I who live,
but Christ Who lives in me;
and the life I now live in the flesh
I live by faith in the Son of God
Who loved me and gave Himself for me.
-Galatians 2:20

Our natural life has a way of resuscitating–
of going back to life as usual.

We need resurrection,
a whole new life in Christ,
Christ living in me.

This is ongoing.

Every choice
needs to pass through the crucifying waters of Baptism.
Is this my old natural life
or the life of Christ?

I can ask of every decision,
“Have you died?”
“Whose life is this?”

An old song comes to mind (I haven’t been able to track down the artist):

Have you died?
Have you laid down your life?
Have you died
and risen to new life?
The love of Jesus Christ
is worth the dying price.
It’s a gift that you can open all your life.
Have you died?

Those who have died this death,
however repeatedly,
need not fear “the second death,”
the lake of fire (see Revelation 20:14).

And they will find that in this life, too,
those who lose themselves
find themselves (see Matthew 16:25).
Living the life of Christ,
the life of divine love,
is its own reward!

St. John fell at Jesus’ feet as though dead.
That’s not a bad way to start the morning’s prayer,
flat on my face before the Living One,
the One Who died and is alive forevermore,
Who reaches out in love to touch me, to tell me not to fear,
and to entrust me with His life,
with His mission for the day.

Now tell me:
Have you died…today?

I Prefer You

April 18, 2012

I stumbled on an immense treasure last week.
Holy Card Heaven and the accompanying sites are just incredible!

I printed a handful to carry with me for my prayer time
and they’ve already borne more fruit than I have time to post,
but here’s a sample:

Characteristics of Divine Love
Reverent Love
I leave everything
for the One I prefer
above all things 

The dove symbolizes the soul.
Her earthly attractions are either burning
or being washed downstream
as she flies to the Lord with flaming heart.

I prefer You above all things

In prayer I “heard” the divine reply:
“I prefer you above all things.”

What I leave behind for God will perish anyway–
things that can never satisfy.
I’ll tire of them or they’ll break–
even if they’re exactly what I hoped for,
I’ll find myself wanting something more, something better, something…?
It only makes sense for me to prefer God
–fully satisfying forever Love–
over these transitory trinkets.

But Jesus…!

He left behind Heaven!

For me.

He emptied Himself of eternal treasure, of lasting happiness,
of glory and splendor and power

…all because He preferred…

me.

He lived a tedious hidden life of monotonous drudgery for 30 years.

For me.

He suffered the ungrateful “what’s in it for me” of the crowds,
the weariness and homelessness of continual travel,
the thick-headedness of His apostles,
and being hunted by the religious leaders
for the three years of His public ministry.

For me.

He made Himself vulnerable
to the most excruciating sufferings we experience as men–
the crushing weight of our guilt, betrayal, desertion,
being taken by force, unjust accusation and condemnation,
exposure, mockery, physical torture, searing cramping,
suffocation, agonizing thirst,
watching His loved ones suffer, and feeling forsaken by God.

For me.

“I prefer you.”

As I prayed the sorrowful mysteries of the rosary,
the theme re-echoed in each decade:
“I prefer to go through this rather than to lose you.”

What tenderness!

What ardor!

What strength beyond imagining!

This came to mind:

Except Jesus is saying,
“She’s not heavy–she’s My bride!”
…under the weight of the cross.

So Jacob served seven years for Rachel
and they seemed to him but a few days
because of the love he had for her.
-Genesis 29:20

(and then he served seven more years for her
after his father-in-law tricked him into marrying her older sister first!)

Our divine Bridegroom will not be outdone in Love
by any mere mortal!

for the sake of the joy that was set before Him
[Jesus] endured the cross, despising the shame
-Hebrews 12:2

That’s talking about me!
I am His joy!

My mind boggles…

This isn’t just for me.

Jesus is gazing penetratingly, passionately at you.
He knows you through and through–the good, the bad and the ugly–
He knows what it will cost Him to win you…
much more than it cost Jacob to win Rachel!
But His voice is firm and powerful…and full of joy!

“I prefer you!”

I aspire to live this holy card,
flying to those open arms, with heart aflame
with love.

Stations of the Cross–Typology

March 30, 2012

A scriptural rosary that used readings (types, foreshadowings)
from the Old Testament inspired this week’s meditations
on the Stations of the Cross during my time of Eucharistic Adoration
in the chapel of the school where my prince teaches:

1st Station: Jesus is condemned to death
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world
(at this point in each Station, I kiss the ground,
as I would if I were in Jerusalem, walking the Via Dolorosa–
which is what the Stations are meant to represent)

Jesus bore the weight of condemnation, rejection,
heavier than the cross.
He’s silent. Abandoned.
Like David accused, cursed on his way out of Jerusalem
(2 Samuel 16:5-13);
like Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego “condemned” for holiness (Daniel 3, 6);
like Joseph (Genesis 39:6-21), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 38), the Maccabean martyrs (2 Maccabees 7), etc.
We can expect holiness to be rejected by the world.
We don’t live by their standards.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

2nd Station: Jesus takes up His Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Go to work with a will.
Build the ark (see Genesis 6, foreshadowing of the Church,
which saves us from the flood of sin)
carry the wood of the sacrifice
(see Genesis 22, foreshadowing of Calvary),
build the temple (I Kings 5:15ff, foreshadowing of Jesus’ Body,
the Church).
Take it openly, with anticipation of enjoying successful completion.
When we shrink from work, shrink from our cross, Lord Jesus crucified,
have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

3rd Station: Jesus falls the first time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

No work is done in human strength–no work that’s eternally worthwhile.
Human strength must fall down in Adoration,
in dependence on the divine.
Only then can it rise.
In creating man, God lowered Himself to the dust of the earth,
to lift him up (see Genesis 2:7).
In recreating man, God again lowers Himself to the dust of the earth,
taking it upon Himself in human flesh
(the Incarnation, see Philippians 2:5-7)
and in landing in it as He falls under the weight of the Cross.
When we try to do Your work in our own strength, Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

4th Station: Jesus meets His mother
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Strong mother of the martyred seven (2 Maccabees 7).
Rizpah standing with the sacrificed (2 Samuel 21).
Courageous, encouraging holy heroism.
When we try to discourage others
from standing firm in the Faith under pressure,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

5th Station: Simon of Cyrene is forced to help Jesus carry the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Lot unwillingly taken by the hand and led out of Sodom,
protesting all the way (see Genesis 19);
Jonah protesting his mission of salvation (see the book of Jonah);
prophets (even Moses!) trying to get out of their God-given mission
(see Exodus 3:11, 4:10; Jeremiah 1:6).
When we protest the good You ask of us, Lord Jesus crucified,
have mercy on us

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

6th Station: Veronica wipes the Face of Jesus
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Rahab sheltering the spies at her own risk (Joshua 2);
the widow of Zerephath giving her last bit of food and drink to a foreigner (I Kings 17:8-24);
the Shunamite woman preparing a permanent guest room for Elisha in her home
(see 2 Kings 4:8-37);
Rebekah watering the camels (see Genesis 24).
They were rewarded!
When we fail to give generously to God’s chosen in need,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

7th Station: Jesus falls a second time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Remember man that you are dust and to dust you shall return.

I lie prostrate in the dust:
give me life according to Your word
-Psalm 119:25

When we forget that we are but dust and ashes, Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

8th Station: Jesus meets the weeping women of Jerusalem
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Lamentations, weeping over Jerusalem;
Rachel weeping for her children–
she cannot be comforted, for they are no more
(see Jeremiah 13:15).
When we weep more over our earthly loss than heavenly,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

9th Station: Jesus falls a third time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Cast to the ground to plead for mercy–for us.
When we neglect to humble ourselves before God, Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

10th Station: Jesus is stripped of His garments
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Joseph stripped of his long tunic (see Genesis 37);
Shebna stripped of his office (see Isaiah 22:15-25);
David stripped of his kingship (see 2 Samuel 15:13-16);
every father whose son usurped his authority (Noah, Genesis 9:20-25; Israel, Genesis 34, 35:22, etc.).
When we rebel against legitimate authority,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

11th Station: Jesus is crucified
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Isaac tied on the wood (see Genesis 22);
Joseph cast into the cistern to die (see Genesis 38:22-24);
the paschal lamb sacrificed (see Exodus 12);
the serpent lifted up in the wilderness (see Numbers 21:4-9).

They have pierced my hands and my feet.
I can count all my bones
-Psalm 22:17-18

When we are rendered helpless, Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

12th Station: Jesus dies on the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Why was it, sea, that you fled,
Jordan, that you turned back on your course?
Mountains, that you skipped like lambs,
and hills, like yearling sheep?
Tremble, O earth, before the Lord!
-Psalm 114:5-7

(the earth quaked when Jesus died, see Matthew 27:52)
When we fail to tremble before You in the awe of adoration,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

13th Station: Jesus is taken down from the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

They shall look upon him whom they have pierced.
They shall mourn for him as for an only son.
-Zechariah 212:10-11

I saw water flowing from the temple.
-Ezekiel 47

(Blood and water flowed from Jesus’ pierced side–
the temple of His Body, see John 2:21; 19:34)
When we mourn, Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

14th Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Tobit risked his life to bury the dead (see Tobit 1:16-2:8),
Daniel was closed in the den of lions (see Daniel 6);
Israel and Joseph were taken back to the Promise Land for burial
(see Genesis 50:12-13; 24-26, Exodus 13:19; Joshua 24:32).
The first land Abraham owned was a grave for his wife, Sarah
(see Genesis 23).
When we lack the reverence for the body
requisite to honorably bury the dead,
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…

Praiseworthy Faith

September 15, 2011

When we ask the saints’ intercession, we are following the Roman centurion’s example.

He didn’t go “straight to Jesus.”
A foreigner himself, he sent a delegation of Jesus’ own countrymen
to put in a good word for him.

“He deserves this favor from you,” they said,
“because he loves our people,
and even built our synagogue for us”
-Luke 7:5

Then, as Jesus approached his house,
the centurion sent friends to tell Jesus
He needn’t trouble Himself to come further–just speak the word.

I am not worthy to have You enter my house.
That is why I did not presume to come myself
-Luke 7:6-7

He did not presume…
he sent others who were more worthy to approach Jesus than he…

Listen to Jesus’ response:

I tell you, I have never seen such faith
among the Israelites
-Luke 7:9

High praise from God Himself!

When we pray to the saints, we are asking for their intercession.
We are sending Jesus’ own countrymen
(Heaven is now their home forever!)
to put in a good word for us;
sending friends–His friends and ours–
to express to Him our faith that they will bring our needs before Him
and that He will respond.
We are sending those who are worthy of Him,
perfected now in Heaven.

And Jesus is pleased :).


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