Do not worry, there is always (some) struggle May 7, 2017 15:21:20 GMT -5
Post by markdohle on May 7, 2017 15:21:20 GMT -5
Do not worry, there is always (some) struggle
My Jesus, despite Your graces, I see and feel all my misery. I begin my day with battle and end it with battle. As soon as I conquer one obstacle, ten more appear (69) to take its place. But I am not worried, because I know that this is the time of struggle, not peace. When the burden of the battle becomes too much for me, I throw myself like a child into the arms of the heavenly Father and trust I will not perish. O my Jesus, how prone I am to evil, and this forces me to be constantly vigilant. But I do not lose heart. I trust God’s grace, which abounds in the worst misery.(Faustina’s Diary 606)
I have noticed than when an artist stands back and looks at his or her work, they are often not satisfied because they see their imperfections in the work of art. Or their not hitting the mark of perfection when the final creation finally comes to it conclusion and seen for what it is. While an observer, especially those who are not sensitive to artistic expression on a deep level may find the work perfect, a masterpiece. Both are right. It depends on the depth of one’s understanding that dictates the experience.
The same is true for the art of living a life of inner awareness and faith. For to go deeper into the spiritual life, is to see what was once taken lightly, is now seen as serious. Not in a scrupulous sense, but in our growth into self-knowledge we see more deeply how serious ‘sin’ actually is. So our struggles may seem little to those not yet sensitive to their own inner need for grace, but for those on the path, the ‘Light-of-the-Holy Spirit’ exposes our need for healing and the gentle mercy of the Lord. This mercy, by the way is not always experienced as gentle, or kind. For God’s mercy is merciless when it comes to allowing the fire of love to consume all that is a hindrance to union….that goes for all of us, the call to union is not just for a few.
So ‘little’ acts of failing in charity or seen in a new light. As St. John of the Cross said, “whether a bird is tethered by a chain or a slender thread, it is still tethered”. Self-Knowledge and purification are one and the same. The deeper we grow in the love of God as well as trust, the more we can embrace our poverty without becoming scrupulous. We look to the Lord, not to ourselves.
If one tends to be burdened by being scrupulous, the only way out is to trust, in spite of ones over-concern for one stance before God. It is a terrible spiritual affliction, hard to overcome. For the level of trust called for in such situation takes a deep embracing of a death to self that is total. Self-centeredness is a cross we all bear in one degree or another. The deeper we move into trust, the less this affliction wounds us.
So rejoice, for Jesus is God’s YES to us, so we continue to struggle, fail and in that failure, we learn to trust ever deeper as Sr. Faustina did. For as St. Paul so beautifully stated: “For those who love God, all things work out for the good.”—Br.MD