Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Friday, June 7, 2013

Entrustment to Mary = Asking Jesus to Dine With Me

My son and I were recently going over the Beatitudes as part of his religion homework.  He was working on memorizing them, but I wanted to make sure he understood them as a way of life, too.  As we went over the first one, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for the Kingdom of God is theirs,” he, of course, wanted to know what it meant to be poor in spirit.  As I was trying to explain that a poor in spirit is a beggar before God, being convinced he needs and depends on God for absolutely everything, I saw for myself how very much I was “immersed in the distant kingdom of temporal things.”[1]

Oh boy, do I ever feel far away from the Kingdom of God.  I feel my days are running into each other without being truly lived.  I feel so lost in the kids’ activities, the household work, and my own boredom with the ordinary.  I feel frustrated with my own lack of connections with each of my children as we go about our day, one moment to the next, with me awaiting the moment they are in bed so I can have some time to myself.  But it all feels so empty, because when they are asleep, I miss them and plan all kinds of interesting ways we can pray, or create, or bake, or play.  But with each new morning, I feel so self-centered again that all I want to do is enjoy my coffee with my ipad.  I feel so sad over this wastefulness.  Last night I watched a Dateline NBC special, featuring a family with 5 children all diagnosed with heart disease.  I only watched this program because my husband works for the hospital providing the healthcare.  I do believe it was God’s grace that led me to that program, for I could see that although the trials were great among this family, they were sustained by grace and hope.  Only God could provide for them, on a day-to-day basis, as these parents awaited a heart for a much-needed heart transplant, or dealt with one very sick child while another was in surgery.  I could see that the parents were depleted of any strength of their own, and yet they were so filled by the grace of God to provide optimism or encouragement for each child in need.  I could see very clearly how they were “poor in spirit”, for the Kingdom of God seemed to be with them.  Their family appeared to be very hopeful, and very filled with joy amongst their fears and concerns.  I was in some ways envious (and yet the Control-Freakness in me knew I did not have that kind of trust or deep-rooted faith to handle such a situation). 

It reminds me of the Scripture verse of God desiring us to be either hot or cold:  “I know your works; I know that you are neither cold nor hot.  I wish you were either cold or hot.  So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth” (Rev 3:15-16).  Although this sounds harsh, being blessed with this spirituality of Communion of Life with Christ through Mary, I can read that without being (too) afraid.  I know God loves me and wants Everything for me.  This family, with the trials they are facing, are gifted with a road to total abandonment to God.  The TV program made me uncomfortable with my recent indifference, an indifference I didn’t really realize I had.  I thought that I was living a spiritually rich life, but I can see how very spiritually miserable I am.  And so I turn to the One Who loves the truth. 

“When you discover and then acknowledge that you are incapable of having faith and trust, of praying, or of serving God on your own, then you will begin to turn your heart to the only Lord and Giver of all gifts…..God loves the truth…..He wants us to see and acknowledge that we stand before Him as beggars who have nothing of our own, and who are always in need of spiritual alms, such as the gifts of prayer, faith, hope and good will…he does not count on himself;  he counts only on the One who constantly wants to enter his miserable quarters and who promises to dine with him….Therefore, he counts only on the gifts that God’s love brings to him.”[2]

With the closeness of our Blessed Mama, I come before my Heavenly Father with empty hands, or rather, hands full of only my spiritual misery.  With her, I desire an end to my indifference, without fear of what must come to lead me to the place where I am dependent on God for everything.  All I know is that I am tired of living without Him.  Please, Lord Jesus, come dine with me. 

[1] S.C. Biela, Open Wide the Door to Christ, [Ft. Collins, CO:  IAMF, 2005], 34.
[2] Ibid 34, 35, 36, 37.

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