Friday, April 14, 2006

Familiarity with Our Lord

We have a great difficulty in not looking at Our Lord as a high-and-mighty Personage. We should try hard to realise that Our Lord, in His Humanity, felt just as we feel. Tired, weary, hungry. When left alone, inclined to take a dismal view of life. Tempted to despondency. Our Lord likes us to show Him sympathy. He in His life on earth was just as appreciative of every particle of sympathy offered Him as we should be. Never the smallest kindness done to Him was unnoticed. He hungered for love and sympathy. In the house of Simon, how He appreciated St Mary Magdalene's ministrations. He said to Simon, who was pretending not to notice Mary Magdalene, "When I entered your house you gave Me no water for My feet. This woman with her tears has washed them, and with her hair has wiped them. You gave me no kiss; this woman has never ceased to kiss My feet." We do not realise how much Our Lord has had to bear for us. The one thing He desired when He came into the world was to do good to souls. If we have one great object in life, and that object is thwarted, what a crushing sorrow it is. And yet, Our Lord was thwarted at every turn. His preaching was misunderstood; His miracles and cures He got no thanks for. The one thing He looked for, to gain love, failed Him. Take Our Lord's day; it was one long string of dsappointments. And how we grumble over our trifling, futile, little disappointments. How ungenerous, how mean we are. When you think of your disappointments, compare them with Our Lord's. The way to be happy is to look at things from His point of view. His efforts invariably met with failure. When he had explained fully about His Body and Blood (John vi), we are told that "many of them ceased to walk with Him." What a sorrow for Him. Then it was that, feeling crushed an worn out, He said to St Peter: "Wilt thou also leave Me?" And St Peter anwered: "To whom, Lord, shall we go, for Thou hast the words of eternal life?" What a disappointment even the Apostles were. At the end even of the third year of His ministry how imperfect they were, how little credit they did Him. They had arrived at no greater understanding of Him than to think still that He was to be the Founder of an earthly kingdom, and at no greater virtue than to be wrangling as to who were to have the best places. If Our Lord were to say to anyone here: "I will, if you choose it, give you a life of perfect happiness; everyone shall try to please you, everything you touch succeed", I trust there is no one here who would not say: "No, Lord, what was good enough for You is good enough for me." These thoughts should throw a flood of light on our lives. If we wish to imitate Our Lord and Master, instead of crying our eyes out in moments of gloom and despondency, we should say: "What Thou dost is for the best, I will not wish it to be otherwise. When I am cowardly and inclined to cry out under suffering; if I ask for the pain to be removed - do not take me at my word, Lord, but give me greater strength and so draw me nearer to Thee."

From: Words of Encouragement - Notes of Instructions - delivered by Rev. Daniel Considine S.J., edited by F. C. Devas S.J. 1951

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