Reflections

Sent by the Father

The Virgin Mary’s Medjugorje message of November 2nd, 2011: 

“Dear children, the Father has not left you to yourselves. Immeasurable is His love, the love that is bringing me to you, to help you to come to know Him, so that, through my Son, all of you can call Him ‘Father’ with the fullness of heart; that you can be one people in God’s family. However, my children, do not forget that you are not in this world only for yourselves, and that I am not calling you here only for your sake. Those who follow my Son think of the brother in Christ as of their very selves and they do not know selfishness. That is why I desire that you be the light of my Son. That to all those who have not come to know the Father ~ to all those who wander in the darkness of sin, despair, pain and loneliness, you may illuminate the way; and that, with your life, you may show them the love of God. I am with you. If you open your hearts, I will lead you. Again I am calling you: pray for your shepherds. Thank you.”

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Mary is the new Ark of the Covenant and Gate of Heaven.  She is all about helping us on our journey to the Father. It is important to entrust ourselves to her motherly guidance and intercession, as she leads us to Jesus our only Way to the Father. Following is a good source for Marian information and inspiration – Marian Apostolate

St. Catherine of Siena

The Father said to St. Catherine: “I am the Fire and you are the sparks.”

“O abyss! O eternal Godhead! O deep sea! What more could you have given me than the gift of your very self?….You are a fire always burning but never consuming, you are a fire consuming in your heat all the soul’s selfish love; you are a fire lifting all chill and giving light” (Dialogue 167.)

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Going Home

A good pathway towards personal fulfillment is aligning ourselves to our own hearts. We must enter into our hearts, because planted therein is the seed of who we really are and where we belong. The words of St. Augustine, “O Lord, our hearts are restless until they rest in Thee,” describe well this universal desire, to come home. Who we are and where we are going directly springs from where we already have been.

We can see this even in nature while watching the salmon persevere through great odds to return to the place of their origin. They will brave the strong currents and rapids in order to ‘go home.’ In the quarterly Desert Call (Spiritual Life Institute Publications), David Crawford illustrates what we might call human migration. In his article Our Restless Hearts, he writes, “Conversions are a ‘homecoming’ experience and that is why they appear to be so powerful. Frequently conversions are experienced as an awakening of a new consciousness which has been dormant ever since the loss of innocence. The ‘awakening’ is really a rediscovery and escavation of a long lost treasure. The longing is for something we have lost and we must come back to the abode which we inadvertantly quitted. We must discover ourselves in our original ‘home.’ We have a nostalgia for the familiar and we must come home…to discover our roots….Conversion experiences are the re-affirming of something already within us. The need to dwell  (there) and be fully alive.”

What happened?

We became detached from the ‘at-homeness’ our first Parents enjoyed in Eden, through their lack of belief and consequent disobedience. In short, we were dispoiled of our inheritance. Because of this, Jesus left his heavenly Home for a brief time, on a quest to bring us back with Him. In our struggle to swim against the current and strong rapids of life, the Father has sent us the Way back to His bosom and that is His Son, Jesus, who wants to carry us back. We see this clearly in the words to His Apostles the night He entered into His agony in Gethsemane, just before his Passion and death.

After Jesus had spoken these words, he looked up to heaven and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son so that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all people, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. I glorified you on earth by finishing the work that you gave me to do. So now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed. I have made your name known to those whom you gave me from the world. They were yours, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. Now they know that everything you have given me is from you;  for the words that you gave to me I have given to them, and they have received them and know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. I am asking on their behalf; I am not asking on behalf of the world, but on behalf of those whom you gave me, because they are yours. All mine are yours, and yours are mine; and I have been glorified in them.’”

“‘And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one. While I was with them, I protected them in your name that you have given me…. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, so that they also may be sanctified in truth. I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them’” (Jn 17:1-26).

Home is at the heart of our desires. Even if unexpressed, the experience of being connected or not to this deepest part of ourselves affects us deeply. Unknown to the one addicted to alcohol or drugs; to another battling depression, or the one given over to rage ~ all stem from the inborn need to fulfill the primordial desire to be home. Again to quote David R. Crawford: “Home is not merely a physical place, its an experience felt deep in the heart. Working on your house, rebuilding, painting, decorating, buying furniture is all an attempt to enrich your experience of home….The soul has a deep and demanding longing for a heart-felt sense of being at home. A home provides a sense of contentment and place; qualities that offer security and identity.”

Returning to the Father’s Heart

Then Jesus said, “There was a man who had two sons. The younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of the property that will belong to me.’ So he divided his property between them. A few days later the younger son gathered all he had and traveled to a distant country, and there he squandered his property in dissolute living. When he had spent everything, a severe famine took place throughout that country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. He would gladly have filled himself with the pods that the pigs were eating; and no one gave him anything. But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired hands have bread enough and to spare, but here I am dying of hunger! I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me like one of your hired hands.’”

So he set off and went to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him. Then the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Quickly, bring out a robe—the best one—and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.  And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!’ And they began to celebrate” (Lk 15:11-25).

Home at last

And so the Home of homes is the Father’s Divine Heart. We must come to this place of rest for our ultimate fulfillment. Here family is experienced to the full with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. And yes, there is a mother: Daughter of the Father, Mother of the Son and Spouse of the Holy Spirit. Our Blessed Mother, while not being divine, nevertheless belongs to the life of the Holy Trinity in a singular and unique way. She has become the new “Ark of the Covenant” and “Gate of Heaven” but most of all she is Mother. And she, too, leads us to the Father.