Medjugorje, Message of March 25, 2012
“Dear children! Also today, with joy, I desire to give you my motherly blessing and to call you to prayer. May prayer become a need for you to grow more in holiness every day. Work more on your conversion because you are far away, little children. Thank you for having responded to my call.”
I began to reflect on the above message asking the question again, Blessed Mother how am I to understand this message and convey it? The following scripture came to my heart;
“This people honors me with their lips but their hearts are far from me; and their reverence for me has become routine observance of the precepts of men…” (Is.29, Mt. 15:8-9, Mk. 7:6-7)
Well this scripture gave a different light to the meaning of the message.
Our Lady is speaking to her children, in grace. These are the practicing Catholics. Those who say they belong to her but live their faith out of routine. Those who are attending mass, even daily mass, but are not putting to life gospels with the message.
Our Lady once said that she wants us to encounter God every time we pray. This is relationship. Don’t we experience people we are in relationship with already. It is the same with the Lord, with Blessed Mother. This is our true family. We need a family relationship with them.
Can we say we are doing this? Are we listening, and making the Word of God flesh in us? Because if so then we see ourselves in truth, not the false identity thinking I am okay and my neighbor is not. We would be wrong in thinking this way.
I had an experience several years ago that I want to share. This was a time I was filled with such great zeal, on fire for the love of God. I was high so to say in divine love and grace. But then I asked the Lord to see myself as He sees me. Not expecting what He would give me in this prayer, thinking so highly of myself, as one who was practicing her faith, going to confession bi-weekly, praying ardently the rosary daily all decades, teaching in the Church, and so on. I thought I was doing all the right things.
But the Lord took me deep into my soul as I saw things that were very ugly within me. I saw within my soul a dead tree, no leaves, just a rotted tree with barely any branches on it.
I saw the gardener cutting off the branches, and then to the trunk of the tree being cut down, until he got to the roots in the ground that needed to come out. I understood that this is what the Lord was doing in my soul, pruning and cutting out all that was dead in me. But at this time, we were getting to the roots of sin. The scripture began to come to life IN ME.
He explained to me that the tree trunk with the tap root was ‘the sin of pride’. And all the other off shoots in root were how the sin of pride took its own life. For me it was pride rooted in fear. Fear of love, fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of abandonment and so on. I then started to see the ax cutting off each of these sins.
I began to see how these sins were operating in me, as they reared their ugly faces, and how they were rooted in the sin of pride, and my own self love.
I was stunned to experience this illumination of conscience in truth. And I emphasize the word TRUTH which by the way I asked for and the Lord obliged.
But then in the gracious mercy of God, I saw his hand filled with black soil and seed, and where this dead tree was being uprooted, the Lord was going to plant a new tree of life in this garden. This was the beginning of what would be several years of a great overhaul of my soul.
After this experience I was before the Most Blessed Sacrament for a minimum of three hours and I felt like I could not face a soul. I was filled with shame, even knowing that the Lord was going to help purify my soul. I could not get to confession soon enough.
But then I learned through the sacrament of reconciliation, as we hammered away at these root sins, I was obtaining the grace to overcome them and lay the ax to them. This did not come easy friends. It was a great struggle and a lot of suffering, uniting everything to the cross.
This way of conversion affected my family life, which was forced to change, because the Lord was changing me and everything in the environment around me. Not just myself and my past sins, but how I lived my vocation, my mothering, and influences of friends. Nothing was laid waste in the journey. Over ten years have passed and I know still yet the Lord is not finished with me.
I experience job loss, persecution, abuse, loss of home, bankruptcy and financial despair, even homelessness over this period of time. We were being stripped of sin whether we liked it or not.
As I prayed deeper into this message, in full view of the experiences I have had, I ask Our Lady again, what? There is still more?
Well I know the answer to that, because I am the greatest sinner. I face my sins every day, and if it were not for the grace of God, I would easily fall into despair. I embrace my human weakness and brokenness, because I know apart from God I can do nothing and I am in most need of His mercy.
At the height of the experience on a retreat I once had which was an inner healing retreat, I felt the Lord in this time give me a new heart.
As this experience of the retreat was completed which seem to be a making of a passover of a sort, I had a visitation with Our Lady who said to me, “now you can see why I am so pressed for time.”
I had a deep understanding that Our Lady desired that everyone of her children needed to experience this level of conversion, this level of healing in the soul.
My friends, Our Lady has been with us for 31+ years this June, patiently calling to us to conversion, prayer, fasting, monthly confession and reading the bible. And today she is saying, that our hearts are still far away from her, from heaven, and her Son and so on.
The scripture that came with this message, speaks volumes. We are putting our own truths in human ways living our faith, and not seeking the truth in what is required of one who calls himself a Christian.
Our Lady desires holiness for her children. Holiness leads to heaven. We are called to be IN THE WORLD BUT NOT OF THE WORLD. This does not mean to live an austere life saying its not for me or you. No! The Church says all Christians are called to LIVING FAITH AND HOLINESS.
To be a Christian today, in a world that seems godless, comes with great sacrifice, living the way of the cross as a witness to Jesus Christ, by the way of Joy, deep Faith, in Hope and above all, in Love for God and His creation.
Closing with the words of Our Lady, “…LIVE YOUR CHRISTIAN VOCATION…HOLY MARTYRS DIED WITNESSING, ‘I AM A CHRISTIAN AND I LOVE GOD ABOVE EVERYTHING’…”