Saturday, November 22, 2014

Into the Depths of Your Hearts

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We are not to domesticate the word of God in the sense that we tame it or shape it to fit with our sensibilities or to conform with our lifestyle.  However, we are meant to allow that word to penetrate and permeate every aspect of our lives, small or great.  Everything is to be shaped by it and it is to be the cypher through which we interpret everything, the lens through which we see every person and their needs.  To do this, Madeleine Debrel tells us, we must not be surprised by the "deep upheavals that each of these words initiates within us" nor should we "try to hold back this sort of free-fall of the word into our depths."  Daughters, allow the word of God to act within you to touch every part of your lives.

The Gospel words are meant to reach into the very roots of our corruption, the depths of which we cannot fathom insofar as we do not know the great heights at which our holiness lies.  We should thus not be surprised at the sad interminable journeys, the deep upheavals that each of these words initiates within us.  We shouldn't try to hold back this sort of free-fall of the word into our depths.  We need the passive courage that allows it to act within us - "Let it be done to me according to your Word."

And when once a single one of these words has stolen into us, we need to know how to desire communion with all the others, even if this little book seems vast, and our life tiny, narrow, and incapable of bearing it. . . .
The revelation of the Gospel is spirit and life.  Whoever wishes to receive this revelation must listen with her spirit and her life.  Often, we offer it only the "letter" of our lifetime, physical solitude, attempts to evade.  When our way of life becomes an obstacle to the Gospel, we readily believe it is not meant for us, or that only a distorted and falsified version is for us . . . .

From morning to night, every day of  our lives, between the shores of our home, of our streets, of our encounters, flows the Word of God in which God seeks to dwell.
The phrase from the Lord that we picked up from the Gospel at Mass in the morning, or during a ride on the metro, or between two chores, or at night in our bed, should no more depart from us than we would depart from our life and our spirit.

It seeks to fructify, to transform, to renew the handshake we offer, the effort we apply to our task, the look we give to those we meet, the way we react to fatigue, the way we wince at pain, the way we blossom in joy.
 
Servant of God Madeleine Delbrel
(Madeleine Delbrel was a French laywoman, writer and mystic devoted to caring for the poor and to evangelizing culture.)