Sunday, March 30, 2008

Divine Mercy

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who in his great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope
through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you who by the power of God are safeguarded through faith, to a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the final time.

In this you rejoice, although now for a little while
you may have to suffer through various trials,
so that the genuineness of your faith,
more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor
at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Although you have not seen him you love him;
even though you do not see him now yet believe in him,
you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy,
as you attain the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

-- 1 Peter 1:3-9
The words speak to perseverance in the present. They are a collection of words I need to have heard this very day. The various trials at hand—in mind, in body, and in spirit—test me like gold in fire. I must endure these bouts of desolation mixed with the rays of consolation so that my faith may not be poorly rooted in sandy soil but in soil that is both life-giving and life-protecting. If we are not put through sorrows there is no way we are to know the immense joys in our lives. There cannot be an experience of joy without feeling the sorrow that our earthly lives experience on occasion.

I have felt an indescribable and glorious joy, and daily I must call myself to rejoice in it, no matter what the current dissuasion might be. All earthly things will pass. Current dissuasions bring me away from the Truth before me, from His Will calling me to act in accordance to Him.

What I so definitely know is that these things—all of them—are firmly rooted. I know I must realize that I may be the captain of my own ship on the seas of life but that I am also captain of a ship with sails and therefore am bound to the will of the winds before me. I am no master of the universe, just one sailing amid the currents of this sea. Where I am to go, what I am to do is mine to decide, but I ultimately must realize and accept His Divine Mercy in my life and in my decision making. It does not excuse me from my wrongs, but it empowers to move on, to give more completely, to love more fully.

I see before myself the many great gifts the Lord has bestowed on me and might wish for them to remain with me forever more, but I do realize that I must learn to let go and love with an unattached love. I must be forever grateful for the acts of mercy in my life. Thanks be to God for His mercy. Thanks be to God.

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