“Dear children, I would like this time to be the time of decision. Make a decision dear children, follow me, follow me! I cannot do anything and I want to do a lot, but I cannot do it without you. Your decisions are weak! Pray dear children, during this time. Only through prayer can you receive this strength, this vigor. I will help you, dear children.” (8/19/1988)
Happy New Year! A New Year, 2011. A time to put away the old and put on the new.
It appears that the Holy Spirit has much more to say in this new year. I pray that the Word spoken is conveyed in truth, according to His perfect will.
What I am sharing with you dear reader is how the Lord has shared it with me. I pray that your heart will understand His Word as He desires to enter into your inner room.
Don’t you agree, that many people commit after the holidays to a so called New Years resolution, as a way of changing old and bad habits.
The classics are new diet fads, quit smoking and so on. Yet all too often they rely on self perseverance and self will. And as usual fail at what they set in their own minds to do.
Why do you think this is so? What are we lacking that we cannot conquer our self and the countless temptations to confront us in our daily life?
Again we are relying on self, not on God in whom all perseverance and strength comes from.
Our focus for this purpose is “the inner self” or the “interior of man.” We are going to try to ponder and go deeper into the inner self spoken of in the scriptures. Yes, all too often these words are over looked when we are reading the scriptures.
Many of us are familiar with the scripture of Jesus preaching on how to pray from the interior. “When you pray, go to your inner room, close the door and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.” (Mt. 6:6)
However often do we hear in the gospels about Jesus retreating from his apostles to go pray in secret or alone?
The interior heart is the tabernacle of grace, or the dwelling place of God. In 1 Kings 7:48-51 Solomon is building the interior of the temple, and speaks of the “inner room” and calls it the holy of holies. Why? Because it is the dwelling place of God where God filled the temple with His Spirit.And now Jesus is echoing the same words in Matthew’s gospel, “go to your inner room;” that is in your heart; the holy of holies, the dwelling place of God. Close the door and pray to your Father. He is there waiting for you, because by your baptism it is so.
The heart of man is the tabernacle and dwelling place of God, the tabernacle of grace. It is the place where we go to meet the Lord each day, and pray in secret with him. It is a place where we can rest and find peace knowing He is there and desires to encounter our souls, or as a bridegroom to our soul, He desires to espouse Himself to us, and become flesh of flesh, spirit to spirit with Him.
However, for some of us, it may be more difficult to enjoy this encounter with our God, because our hearts are too cluttered with other things that we may have more of a desire for.
Therefore, the solution is exercise! Not only is it important to exercise our human bodies by physical activities but more importantly we must also exercise our human spirits to over come the weakness of our fleshly bodies.
“Father lead us not into temptation; deliver us from evil…” We all know these words. It is the way Jesus taught us to pray. Jesus knew the weakness of man, of course! He came to deliver us from evil and sin. Jesus came to lead us to the Father. In Him, we can pray these words to the Father, because they belong to the Son.
The human spirit is very weak, and very prone to sin. How do we overcome our inner self and the flesh to conquer sin in our hearts? The answer is, “Good hard core spiritual exercises!” Yes, the old fashioned way, which many have forgotten or many of us are lazy in practicing, just like we are lazy to exercise.
Instead of just doing those 50 jumping jacks or so; we should dedicate 50 days to fasting and penance, renouncing what we like the most or what leads us to our habitual sin, that is the bad habit. Put some value to your offering for your new years resolution and sacrifice it to the Lord.
For example, a simple prayer may be (like for quitting smoking):
“Jesus, I quit for love of you, in thanksgiving for the gift of life and the body you gave me which is the temple of the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20) I desire to keep my body holy and pure that you my King may enter the tabernacle of my heart and dwell and reign in me, and be glorified! Jesus I beg you-conquer this addiction in me. Help me to overcome this vice which I am addicted….”
When you offer a sacrifice in love, the Lord will provide you with the strength He had to overcome His temptation, and then you will unite with your Savior, and together you will fight the interior battle you have within against this addiction/temptation.
Maybe you need the 50 jumping jacks if you battle laziness or sloth, and struggle with being over weight, or possibly depression. Give up something you like most and fast on Wednesday and Friday from this vice and pray, “Jesus, I offer this as penance for you out of love, and for those who are lukewarm in their faith, or maybe for the conversion of sinners, etc.”
My friends, let’s face it. Everyone of us has something to conquer in the inner self. But to over come and triumph the battle belongs to the Lord. All we need to do is abandon ourselves and surrender, and put some value to it for God’s glory.
Use your resolution to grow in grace and virtue. Then look back at the end of the year, to evaluate how far you’ve come in your conversion. Some days will easy, and others will be difficult and will take greater effort or more fervent prayer. But do not delay any longer.
BACK TO THE INNER SELF of the heart that is….
Pope Benedict XVI said in 2009 – “the Church must move from her head into her heart…”
The beauty of the Catholic Church is her vast richness and her universal heritage. She has wonderful and profound teachers who have dedicated their lives to serve her; and many of the faithful rush to them to encounter God, soaking up the spoken word, and fed by the books, media etc that comes.
All well and good for the learning soul. However it comes to a point that one who learns so much must eventually put it to life. Knowledge isn’t everything, and many humble saints have proven this. Humility is the path to heaven, such as St. Therese’ by her little way, or some of the other children models of saints.
There are many forms of theology and philosophies; some are good and some are not so good. Even among theologians arise debates, and often unresolved issues left to mystery. The Lord said that He would use the weak to same the wise, and even the wisest man does not know the mind of God.
But those who seek relationship with God, that is seeking a good heart to heart union with the mystical spouse as one who is meek and humble of heart, will find the greatest treasures of heaven. “The beginning of wisdom is fear of the Lord…” (countless scriptures echo this quote) One who humbles himself in truth before God, and who realizes who he really is in the presence of God, finds favor in the Lord.
Sadly many who have all knowledge find themselves all to proud in their knowledge with puffed up heads and are lacking as Jesus said, “the heart of the Law.”
Remember the Lord admonished the scribes and the Pharisees because they were full of pride thinking they knew everything of God and lorded it over the people. They lacked a heart relationship with God.
The heart, the interior core of the human being is the source of life, not only for the body but the inner soul, which is the bridal chamber of the Lord.
The human heart is the marriage bed of the soul with her mystical spouse; and it is kept most intimate and so secret for God alone, that no other human soul can ever reach its depths unless one himself were to give it away, and even then it is not in our control.
Who could comprehend the mystery of the human spirit? Can science study the human spirit as it does the human body, and provide formulas and calculations? No! Science cannot prove anything of the human spirit, and flounders in its un-explained mystery. The spirit of man in the image of God will remain an eternal mystery as long as humanity exists; man will never fully comprehend it.
And here today, we are going to the source of the Spirit , to try and tap into the Holy Spirit who is at work in you and whose eyes rest upon you. With this we need His help.
Come Holy Spirit! Stir within my heart! Open the eyes of my heart to the hidden mysteries within me. I want to know you my God and grow intimate with you. I give you permission Lord to come into my heart. Lead me to the place where you rest in me, that I may go there in secret to meet you…
Dear reader – rest for a moment on these words of the Mother…”Dear children, I beseech you, come to prayer with awareness. In prayer you shall come to know the greatness of God…rejoice with me! My heart is rejoicing because of Jesus and today I want to give Him to you. Dear children, I want each one of you to open your heart to Jesus and I will give Him to you with love. Dear children, I want Him to change you, to teach you, and to protect you. Today I am praying in a special way for each one of you, and I am presenting you to God so He will manifest Himself in you. I am calling you to sincere prayer with the heart so that every prayer of yours may be an encounter with God. In your work and in your everyday life, put God in the first place. I call you today with great seriousness to obey me and to do as I am calling you. Thank you for having responded to my call…” (12/25/87)
Now pause and reflect, and read one more time the Mother who is speaking to your heart.
Are you aware during your prayer?
Has the Lord or our Mother touched your heart by the power of the Word?
Are you experiencing God in your prayer? Write down what you are experiencing. If not, take some quiet time and sit with this word all the more.
Our Lady desires that we have an encounter with God, that when we pray we come to meet her and Jesus in a most intimate way.
The bridegroom wants to experience His bride my friends and unite with her. No theologian can teach someone to love. Love comes from within the human heart, as a full act of the will.
What successful marriage is there when a husband and wife don’t have union of the hearts; or if there is no affection or any touch between them? That marriage is sure to be doomed right?
If Jesus is the bridegroom and the Church is the bride of Christ, and we do not have an intimate encounter with our mystical spouse interiorly in the heart, what then is said of our union with God? Spiritual divorce? Is there any reason then why faith is lacking in the world?
We do not know our lover. He has become a fictitious character, or a myth to most, or an idea in our mind, or worst like a dead object.
Wow Church! You are really missing out! Go into your local church little bride and look at your spouse crucified. Look at what your husband has done for you. Is he the one you are looking at, that man on the cross fiction?
The love that your spouse, your husband has for you drove Him to this place. He climbed on to that cross; opened His hands and his feet and allowed you to nail him there. He is not going anywhere little bride. He is with you firmly planted on this cross and will see you through everything you endure.
Take only a few minutes to look at your husband little bride and consider what He’s done for you. O lowly selfish bride could you find such courage as this man had for you?
There is no greater love than to lay down ones life for His friends…
Friends? Are we friends with our spouse? Friends know each other. Friends spend time together. Friends stay together through and through. Behold O little bride your friend; your lover and your King.
Does the one you see before your eyes who is crucified awaken your inner self? What thoughts now are running through your heart?
His blood cover you in His mercy. He did not come to condemn the world, but He came to save it. He paid a dear price to do so. He cries out with all His heart for your soul. He cries out to be loved by you, and that you give yourself as He has given Himself to you.
Look upon your crucified O little bride of Christ. Where do you see any self love in Him; I tell you, there isn’t any. His arms are outstretched. He is stripped of everything and is exposed for all who find themselves perplexed at this event.
But you O little bride who expect much from your husband, He is looking at you with tears and blood pouring from his eyes. He does not care if other scoff or laugh at Him, He only has eyes for you, His beautiful bride; and he longs to hold you in His embrace.
O little bride of Christ, step up! Come to your husband and unite with Him. Stretch our your hands and your feet and press them to His body, where the two will become one flesh and blood, bone of bone, flesh of flesh, once more!
What eye has not seen or what ear has not heard what the Father has prepared for those who love Him.
“Dear children, I want to tell you that the cross should be central these days. Pray especially before the Crucifix from which great graces are coming. Now in your homes make a special consecration to the Crucifix. Promise that you will neither offend Jesus nor abuse the Crucifix. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (9/12/85 – this message was given to Marija before the celebration of the Feast of the Holy Cross which was the day of the largest pilgrimage of the year at Krizevac).