Thursday, February 8, 2018

Let not your heart be troubled

Let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in Me.       (John 14: 1) 
Dear Daughters of St. Philip Neri,

You must have no anxiety at all and let nothing disturb your interior quiet.  Do not try to control, manage or manipulate the realities of your daily life.  Rather, entrust yourself to the Providence of God.  You will be put to the test; if only to lead you to let go of the things that you tend to prefer more than His love.  Know that the Lord sees all of your needs more clearly than you do and there will be many occasions when you discover that your plans are foreign to His. You press to have your own designs fulfilled prematurely rather than according to God's mind and will.  

The call you have received from God is beautifully simple - to adore Him; but you seek to fill your days and nights with things and activities that bring you no closer to fulfilling His designs for you.  You must give first place to adoration and let the Lord accomplish what He desires in your life and the life of others.

Consecrate yourself to the time of prayer in the "rule" the Lord has given you.  This is how you cling to God and through this He can accomplish the impossible in you.  Place the things that weigh upon you the most or cause you the greatest anxiety in His hands, especially those individuals who cause you the greatest distress.  Otherwise work quietly in His presence through the day until you return to Him once again in prayer.  He will "order all things mightily and sweetly."
A troubled heart is always an indication of one’s lack of trust in Me. Trouble, interior disquiet, comes from wanting to control and manage the things that are better left to My Father’s providence. At every moment, I provide you with occasions to trust Me and to abandon to Me the things that you would prefer to see other than they are. Whenever you come up against something that contradicts your plans or fails to meet your expectations, give that thing, that situation, that disappointment to Me. Entrust it to My Heart, and then relinquish all worry over it. 

I am not distant from you nor am I removed from your life and all that makes up your days. Not a hair falls from your head without My Father permitting it. Make frequent acts of trust and abandonment. Let go of the things that you cling to most tightly. Come to Me with empty hands. Hold on to nothing, not even to your own plans and desires for good things. If the things that you want for yourself are good, know, beyond any doubt, that the things I want for you are infinitely better. 

When you find something difficult, or beyond your strength, ask Me to do it in you or even to leave it undone as I see fit. There are things that you would want to do that are alien to My plans, and there are things that I would have you do that you, of yourself, would never think of doing. It is your attachment to doing what you want that impedes the rapid fulfilment of My perfect designs for you and for this place. 

I called you here to adore Me. You have found other things to fill your days and your nights, but none of these will advance My plans, nor will they contribute to the unfolding of what My Heart has conceived for you. Give the first place to the adoration that I have asked of you, and still ask of you, and you will see wonders. 

The doing must be Mine. Yours it is to trust Me, to wait upon Me, to abide close to My Heart like the beloved disciple. When you are to do something that springs from My plan for you, you will find that thing easy to do, for I will give you light and strength and perseverance in the doing of it. 

Consecrate to Me the hours of prayer that I have asked of you. Follow your Rule, and all else will fall into place. When you are close to Me in the Sacrament of My love, you are working with Me, and I am working in you, and this in a way that is divinely efficacious and supernaturally fruitful. When the time to end your adoration comes, take leave of Me with the same freedom and joy with which you came into My presence. By following your Rule, you do not forsake Me; you cleave to Me and allow Me to speak, to act, to do in you things that would otherwise be impossible for you. 

The things that weigh upon you most heavily, the things that cause you the most anxiety and distress, are the very things that I want you to abandon to Me. When a particular people become for you a cause of worry and distress, give them to Me and represent them before My Eucharistic Face. You will see changes in them that only My grace can produce. When something becomes a cause of anguish, or makes you fearful, or robs your heart of peace, give that thing to Me immediately, and once you have given it to Me, think of it no more. I order all things mightily and sweetly. Carry out your duties with freedom and simplicity. Do one thing after another. Give all things to Me upon beginning them, and offer all things to Me upon completing them. Work quietly in My presence, and then return to My presence here in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar to find rest for your soul and to console My Heart with your friendship.

In Sinu Jesu
The Journal of a Priest at Prayer

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

sink into the ground of adoration

But Jesus answered them, saying: “The hour is come that the Son of man should be glorified. Amen, amen I say to you, unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, itself remaineth alone. But if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world, keepeth it unto life eternal. If any man minister to me, let him follow me; and where I am, there also shall my minister be. If any man minister to me, him will my Father honour.” John 12: 23–26 
Dear Daughters of St. Philip Neri,

Are you willing to follow the Lord into the hiddenness of prayer; allowing yourself to sink into the darkness of an absolute faith?  More, are you willing to completely die to self and to lose yourself in adoration?  For you must let go of all that the senses cling to and that to which reason and understanding hold fast for security; forgoing what even seems to be soundness and stability of mind.  

For it is only in imitation of your Beloved, by allowing yourself to be buried in the rich ground of faith, by dying to any sense of yourself outside of Him, will you bear much fruit. Can you let yourself consent to disappear, to become what you contemplate, to be forsaken by all and wrapped in silence?  It is only then that you will enter into the Silence that is Life and the glory that is not of this world.

There is a very real sense in which the prayer of adoration is a loss of one’s life. It is a kind of falling into the ground to die. Remember this when you come to adore Me. Look at the Sacred Host and see Me, who am the grain of wheat fallen into the ground and risen to life, and become the food of a vast multitude of souls, and this until the end of time. The grain of wheat that I was has become the Host that I am. 

When you adore Me, forgetting yourself and forsaking all things for Me, you imitate Me, for adoration is a kind of death. It is a passing out of everything that solicits the senses and a cleaving to Me alone in the bright darkness of faith. So it will be in the hour of your death. 

The more deeply you sink into adoration, the more deeply are you planted in the earth, there to die, and there to sprout, and finally to bring forth much fruit. 

Sink into the ground of adoration. Consent to disappear, to forsake appearances, and to die. Enter into the silence of the Host. Become by grace what you contemplate in faith. Here, I am hidden, silent, and forsaken by all, save a very few whom I have chosen to enter into My hiddenness, My silence, and My solitude. If you would serve Me, follow Me into My Eucharistic state. Lose all that the world counts as something and become with Me something that the world counts as nothing. 

“Where I am, there also shall my servant be.”  You are here because I am here and was here before you. Adoration is the humblest and, at the same time, the most fruitful expression of service. To adore Me is to serve Me, and “if anyone serve Me, my Father will honour him.”  When you adore Me, you serve Me, and in serving Me, you are united to Me who hide Myself, and give Myself, and reveal Myself in this Sacrament. This is the life of adoration: it is the mystery of the grain of wheat buried and hidden in the darkness of the earth. It is the promise of life in abundance and a foretaste of the face-to-face vision that awaits you in glory.

In Sinu Jesu
A Journal of a Priest at Prayer