Tag Archives: gift

Redemptive Suffering: Our Gift to the Father

From Volume One: Directions for Our Times as given to Anne, a lay apostle: Thoughts on Spirituality:

Think of Jesus’ Passion as a big present. I mean the biggest you can imagine. As big as a house. It is wrapped in the most precious gold paper, with exquisite bows and garlands around it. The gift is so beautiful it takes eternity to walk around it, study it, and admire it. There are countless different facets of this gift. The study of it will indeed take your lifetime, and much longer.

Now say you want to emulate that gift. Do you have the power, the technology, the creativity to come close? Not on your best day, of course. You were not intended to create that glorious a gift. But this big gift is going to your dad, so you want to enclose some well wishes too. So you get a little gift and you wrap it up in the closest thing to the gold paper you can find. And you set your little gift at the foot of the big one. That is uniting your suffering’s to Christ’s. When your Father sees the gift, from His beloved child, does He say, “What a little gift. How puny it looks next to this big one?” Hardly. He smiles, like any father, and His heart is moved to all manner of generosity by your love and effort. His heart is gladdened. This is uniting your suffering to Christ [41-42].

Short Note on Prayer

“Prayer lifts the soul into the heavens where it hugs God in an indescribable embrace.

Prayer is the desire for God, an indescribable devotion, not given by man but brought about by God’s grace. As St Paul says: For when we cannot choose words in order to pray properly, the Spirit himself intercedes on our behalf in a way that could never be put into words.” — From the Office of the Readings

What a great thing to keep in mind! That prayer is a gift. It is not my list of demands to God, but the free gift of a relationship with Him. He *allows* us to communicate with Him. He doesn’t have to. How often do we — do I — take for granted the fact that I can talk to God, and He can speak to me?

I have had it happen before where I am completely unable to string together a coherent thought, but have the desire to communicate something to God. But God knows even before we do, so the words aren’t really necessary; and being coherent isn’t necessary, because He has perfect understanding. This is not to say that we shouldn’t pray, because God hears us anyway. As the way we were made, God is constantly inviting us to respond to Him and to seek a relationship with Him. Prayer is a gift, but we need to cooperate.

May the Lord God bless you!