Monday, December 17

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. “When Jesus was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem according to the custom of the feast.” Luke 2:42. Passover. Boys are automatically bar mitzvah when they are 13 years and one day old. Its part of growing up, of becoming an adult. Here Jesus is 12, still a child. But big enough now to go up to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover and part of that meant to make sacrifice. For a minute, with sacrifice and a joyful mystery in mind, think about Jesus. He knew why He was here, here in this world. His purpose was to provide a Passover lamb just like Abraham told Issac God would. Genesis 22:8. And here was that promised Sacrificial Lamb. But no one saw Him for what He was. They just saw a little 12-year-old boy. But Jesus saw His mission and His Father’s House. And I believe He felt Joy. We tend to dwell, I think, on the sorrow involved in the sacrifice of Christ. But that’s only half of it. Jesus knew all about both sides of that coin. As He stood there in the Temple He knew that sins would be forgiven, and He saw blind people see, and lame people walk, and He saw the dead raised to life. He saw His creation, you and me, those He loved, given an opportunity to live again with a life like He meant for us to have all along. He stayed behind there in the Temple after the rest had headed back home. Why? Perhaps to continue in the joy as an example to us. We’re to follow Him. In following we think of bearing our cross in life like He did. Turn the coin over and look at the other side. See yourself walking through life with no burden at all because of His Sacrifice. And, with Him and in Him, know the joy.

Today … St. Wivina was a Benedictine abbess. Before that she was a hermitess. Ever notice how many saints started out their religious “career” as loners? Maybe being alone, without distractions, puts things in perspective. Maybe things being in proper perspective puts God first. Probably there is, rather than loneliness, great joy in Him being first, where He should be.

Luke 15:7 … “I say to you, that even so there shall be joy in heaven upon one sinner that doth penance, more than upon ninety-nine just who need not penance.”

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Published in: on December 17, 2012 at 4:16 am  Comments Off on Monday, December 17  
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John and Mary and the Cross

Put yourself in the garden with Jesus. In the distance you can hear people, a group of men approaching. You see the glow of torches through the trees. As they draw near you recognize the Temple guard. Judas is with them. The moment Jesus has told you of has arrived. Its begun. You see Judas embrace Jesus. The guards move forward. Jesus speaks. They fall back. Some think that when Jesus spoke, when He said, “I am He”, He actually used the Great “I AM”. The Divine Name that only the high priest uttered once a year during the Passover season when he entered the Holy of Holies in the Temple to offer up the lambs blood. Here Jesus, the True High Priest and Lamb of God, speaks that Name, His Name. “I am”. The Name God shared with Moses when asked, “Who shall I say has sent me?” The guards fall back out of sheer shock. They collect themselves, move forward again. Peter strikes with the sword. Jesus stops the violence, heals the wounded man, and all of His followers run. Away. He is alone with those bent on His destruction. As He is taken away two of the twelve follow at a distance. Peter and John. John is able to gain entrance to the court-yard when Jesus is taken before the high priest for His “trial”. We lose track of John here. Did he stay, like Peter, at a distance? Consoling himself that he was still with Christ, he had not forsaken Him? He was just waiting at a safe distance. How often do I think I’m ok even when I keep a “safe” distance? Isn’t the whole point of being a Christian to draw nearer Christ? Where does a safe distance enter into that equation? Or did John leave, going … where? We don’t know because we’re not told. Peter stays. At a safe distance. But he is still there, still keeping Jesus in view. Does he feel good about himself because he is, after all, still there? What does he do? He warms himself by the fire. How often do we convince ourselves that we’re ok because we can still see Jesus even while we warm ourselves by a worldly flame? Doesn’t that always end in denial? Back to John. Whatever he did after he got Peter into the courtyard (John “knew” someone, he had “contacts”, “pull”.) we don’t see him again untill the Crucifixion. He is at the foot of the cross with the mother of Christ. Mary. Why there and why with Mary? I said all of the above to make one relatively short point. Jesus loved John. John is called the disciple that Jesus loved. We know that Jesus loved, loves, them, us, all. But why was John singled out this way? For the same reason that he was at the cross with Mary. You see, John loved Jesus. But he ran just like all the rest. He deserted. But when it came to Mary and the cross he could not run, he would not desert. Why? Because John had a relationship with Mary as well as his relationship with Jesus. He could not let her go alone to Calvary. He went because he loved Jesus, true. But he also went out of love and care for Mary. You see now how it works? Because John loved Mary and could not bear to leave her during this time of sorrow he stands where? He stands at the foot of the cross with Jesus. Do you see now how it works? It really is: “To Jesus through Mary.”

Published in: on June 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm  Comments Off on John and Mary and the Cross  
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