Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Mercy is flowing like a river, out to you and me.
What does Mercy mean to you?
I have heard people in movies cry out for mercy just before they are about to taken by a pirate, have their village pummeled or be convicted or killed for a crime they committed. Perhaps Mercy is to overlook something or maybe to show some kind of favoritism.
Whatever Mercy means to you, there is a good chance that you have not yet been introduced to perhaps one of the highest forms of love that exists known to man and in a world obsessed with judgment, violence, anger, crime and lack of forgiveness, we are desperate for mercy or at least, we should be.
St. Therese the little flower said that Mercy is a Heart which gives itself to the miserable. St. Therese the little flower or of the "Little Way" wrote: “When we keep little we recognise our own nothingness, and expect everything from God just as a little child expects everything from its father. Nothing worries us.”
She heard the call and understood the same message we are hearing today. That our heavenly Father’s love (which is usually hidden from the wise and prudent, and revealed only to little ones) that the love of God flows out from Him to those who are little. The Saints, Our Lady, the only-begotten Son, on earth, and to those whom most would concede are the farthest off – the weak, the outcast, the sinful.
Saint Augustine interprets the word “misericordia” as meaning miseris cor dare –to give oneself to, or to pour one’s heart out over the weak, the outcast, and the fallen. I have heard others define it as "one who gives itself in love to those in misery". I think I like this one the best.
So many of us are in misery, suffering under the weight of our own weaknesses. Some describe this as our cross, but I think that our cross is not the same as our weaknesses. Our cross is that holy and divine purpose for which we have been called in service to bring the love of Christ to others, we are all called to know, love and serve God and the cross, although can be difficult to bear will ultimately be the vehicle of which we will not only grow in holiness, but is required for those wishing to travel upon the road of salvation. Our weakness, do not in and of themselves help us to grow in holiness, rather it is in overcoming them that we grow and strengthen or fortitude and faith. One would never say that overcoming the crosses is what leads us to holiness, so you see weaknesses are not the same as a cross.
However, our weaknesses can incapacitate us to such an extent that many of us fall under the weight of the cross and that is when we are to call upon the mercy of God that He come to us and help us carry the weight of our weaknesses, just as Simon came to Jesus when He became physically weak and could not carry the cross, so too does Christ desire to come to us in our many weaknesses physical and otherwise.
Mercy is a beautiful form of love and St. Faustina tells us in her diary that Jesus Christ appeared to her and told her that His Mercy is larger than the any ocean, it's depths unfathomable. He desires to love us right now, regardless of our weaknesses, regardless of what we have done, regardless of how unworthy we feel or even are. All of us are invited to come and enter into the Wedding Feast! That includes those of us who feel so burdened so unworthy. Remember that Jesus hung out with a woman who as a prostitute, He touched lepers, He ate with tax collectors in fact, it was those who were the littlest that were able to see Him and hear Him as He invites us through His Divine Mercy to accept the invitation. Just as the prodical son was lovingly embraced and celebrated upon his return so to will of us who allow Christ's Merciful love flow out of the font of His pierced heart and wash us clean, heal our wounds and quench our thirst for love from God. I invite you to look into Divine Mercy and discover what God's plan is for your life. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
Open my eyes lord, help me to see your face, open my eyes lord, help to see.
Open my ears lord, help to hear your voice, open my ears lord, help me to hear.
Open my heart lord, help to love like you, open my heart lord, help to love.
First image :
“I Cried For You”
Acrylic on Canvas, 80cmx120cm
2008 Nicole Helbig
This is a painting of Jesus and Mary Magdalene, depicting the scene when she sobs at His feet in sorrow for her sinful life. Jesus lays a gentle hand on her hair, gives her a blessing and sends her off to His Mother, Mary.
Notice that Jesus utilizes Mary to help others grow in faith. This is because she understands our suffering and mothers help heal our wounds. She holds us in her arms while Christ makes it better. Thats what moms are for.