Saturday, June 14, 2008

We are all Cyrenians

And they compelled a passer-by, [insert you name here] of [insert your country of origin here], who was coming in from the country (or city), to carry his cross.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Love is of God (A re-post from '05)

"In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also must love one another" (I Jn. 4:10-11).
Here is a quote that I would like to share, from Hans Urs von Balthasar's book Love Alone is Credible:

The principle (of love)... cannot be reduced to man as a governing center. God remains the center, and man is drawn beyond himself toward the absolute as it manifests itself. He "possesses" love only insofar as love possesses him, which means that he never possesses love in such a way that he could describe it as one of his powers, which lies at his own disposal. To be sure, this does not mean that love remains external to him, but if it does not, it is only because love itself takes possession of him in his innmost heart--interius intimo meo.

One of the implications of this is that we must always look to Jesus Christ to see what love is, and open our hearts to be loved by him. He is here with us, in the world, and in the world he is absolutely unique--for he came down from heaven.

All things "In Christ"

Spiritual love...

will find full fellowship... in the Christ who alone binds us together. Thus this spiritual love will speak to Christ about a brother more than to a brother about Christ. It knows that the most direct way to others is always through prayer to Christ and that love of others is wholly dependent upon the truth in Christ. It is out of this love that John the disciple speaks. "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth" (3 Jn 4).

A good reminder: For us, all things must be done in Christ; we must take the utmost joy in walking in Christ, and seeing that others walk in Christ. Christ is everything: God and man, the Creator and creation united. He sums up all in himself. If we have him, we have all things. "All things are yours, you are Christ's, and Christ is God's."

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

God's Will

To us, God's will is always a mystery, and whenever we treat signs of his will as if they were not expressions of mystery, then we are inserting our own ideas into God's plan. Signs of God's will must be received with profound humility and reverence--they must not be claimed as one's own. The Christian is not to indulge in imagination concerning his future; or at least, he is to limit it as much as he can, and take care not to consider such imaginings to be reality. All plans for the future must be seen as conditional on the will of the Lord, which is mysterious.
"To live is Christ"; therefore we do not need particular temporal blessings over others. Christ alone is our life. Christ alone is our joy. All other things are accounted as loss, as rubbish, in comparison with the surpassing good of knowing Christ Jesus as our Lord. Even were he to call us to himself tomorrow by some freak accident or illness, cutting off abruptly all of our earthly hopes (even worthy ones), this is the door to greater communion with Christ--"death is gain."
Clinging to Christ, expecting good things from him (the good things that he wants to give, not that we want to receive), we strive onwards and upwards in this life and beyond, deeper and deeper into the bosom of the Father from which Christ comes.