Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Blog # 228 Loved ones affect us
Blog # 228 Loved ones affect us When we love someone deeply that person has a profound influence upon our life. The mutual sharing of self that love entails enables and causes us to be like the persons we love, and the more we are like one another the more perfectly our love can be. We are one in our love. This is true of friends at school or work, neighbors, family, husband and wife, God and those who love God. Sadly, however, in all of these categories there are people who do not love, do not take their love seriously, do not keep themselves aware of their love, develop their love or appreciate it. Knowing the danger of forgetting or taking for granted even our love for God, it is good for us regularly to reflect upon the nature of love itself, to examine the way we love God and one another, renew our love, and make new effort to help it grow. How many people do we really know ,in our Church family, in our neighborhood? How much time do we spend with our family other than those times we have to be home in order to eat and sleep? How deep and meaningful are our conversations with our husband or wife, our Mom, and Dad? What have we given to God or received from God today? These are questions that tend to help us evaluate the reality and depth of our love. When we love someone deeply, everything that relates to that person takes on new value and meaning for us. The young mother who cherishes and stores away the first picture her little son had drawn does not do so because he is already an artist but because he is her son. The picture is valuable to her not because of its beauty but because of her love. The same is true with regard to our love for God and God's love for us. Great Saints have always realized their personal limitations and even their sinfulness. None of the Saints stood before God and boasted of their deeds. Yet they knew God cherished their lives and found joy, to speak humanly, in all they did because of God's love for them. A similar thing was true on the part of the Saints in their response to God. Because they realized God was present in all creation, all creation spoke to them of God. All creation was holy. All creation was a temple in which they discovered God's love anew and worshiped God. In relation to the special unique love of husband and wife, hobbies, relatives, sickness, achievement. needs, joys, and sorrows, all take on new meaning and value for one another because of their love. In relation to God, all creation, the work of God's love, belongs to God. All of creation takes on a new meaning and value for someone who loves God. When we love someone deeply, that person has a profound influence upon our life. In the light of this, the prayer of Jesus to the Father at the conclusion of the Last Supper before leaving for the Garden of Gethsemane takes on special significance and value. ( Jn 17: 22-26). "I have given them (His disciples) the glory you gave me that they may be one, as we are one - I living in them, you living in me - that their unity may be complete. So shall the world know that you loved me, and that you loved them as you loved me...To them I have revealed your name, and I will continue to reveal it (in 2012 !) so that your love for me may live in them, and I may live in them." When we love someone deeply that person has a profound influence upon our life. I bring that insight to your attention for the third time in this blog in response to that prayer of Jesus as by faith it relates to us, and can be fulfilled in us by faith. The examples I gave, of the first drawing of a mother's son and the presence of God in all of creation as an expression and gift of God's love, can be clearly understood in these experiences of people who love one another. They apply to all love, our love for God and God's love for us. To understand, appreciate, and capture the depth and beauty of the insight I am now hoping to share or call to your attention or memory if it has already occurred to you, we have to keep in mind that all that we as human creatures can think or say or do, when 'applied' to God, is infinitely different than when it is applied to us. However, our thoughts words and deeds are mysteriously enough LIKE the truth of them in God , they can be analogously true in spite of their limitations. For example. for us to think or say God is merciful that is true. But it is only true analogously. God's 'mercy' is infinitely above and beyond our limited human concept and experience of mercy. Our human thoughts are true analgously even in their infinite distance from infinite truth. Applied to God's love for us, with love remaining as a bearer of gifts, the gift of love for which Jesus prayed and which can be ours by faith is an actual finite sharing in God's personal infinite life through the gift of Sanctifying Grace. "Father...that you would love them as you love me, you living in me, I living in them" (Jn 17: 22 - 26). As siblings born of the same mother and father are identified and related to one another uniquely in their sharing the life of their parents, so we, called and privileged through faith and Baptism are A NEW CREATION. ( 2Cor. 5: 17). "I am the vine, you are the branches" (Jn 15: 5). We are identified and united in our sharing the life of God our Father through the unique person of Jesus , the eternal Word of God, God's 'natural' son, and one of us by nature the son of Mary. Unimaginably distant from us in the reality of the Holy Trinity, God's love/life is as intimatly close to us by faith as every breath we take, or perhaps better every breath we receive in the love of God by faith. This has been a long blog so I will leave for Blog # 229 a gathering of some Biblical texts to remind ourselves of the content of what has been revealed by God concerning our rebirth in Baptism and the supernatural life we share by the gift of Sanctifying Grace. May the Lord be with you and bless you wth peace and joy.