Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Six Profound Truths


1) The more Truth you encounter, whether you understand it or not, it transforms you. It is an encounter with the Living Christ, who is Truth Himself. Constantly immersing yourself in all philosophy, theology, Angels, Saints, Church History, Sacred Tradition, and Sacred Scripture; swimming through all this and through all good; contemplating the richness and depth and beauty of nature; surrendering to the God who is always with you to the end of the age; loving and loving and loving Jesus Christ more and more until you are in ecstasy in His love and cannot bear any more on earth... This is the life of a Saint. This is the life of holiness that your Divine Spouse wants to give you. Allow yourself to be transformed; do not hesitate to go over your head and challenge yourself into the deepest of Catholic Truth and the deepest Love of God that we can fathom and possibly swim in. 

It will work on your soul and transform you, if you only dare to immerse yourself and not settle for the ordinary and humdrum and regular. Your burning passion and ardent, flaming, zealous love for Jesus Christ, His Sacred Heart, and His entire Person must be above and beyond the most zealous passion ever exhibited by the most ardent and sadly misguided Protestant, for you are held to a vastly and frighteningly higher standard of Grace than he is. Our Lord has said, To whom much is given, vastly much more is required; and you, dear Catholic, have been given hundreds of thousands of majestic and Heavenly finite gifts, the chief of them being the Mother of God herself, and you have one Gift of Infinite Worth: Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist. You cannot possibly love Him enough for that Gift, but throw yourself into the infinite consuming fire of His love anyway. 


Remember, the honest Protestant living in simple faith, one of good will, loves Christ with such a zeal and ferocious passion because he literally has nothing else but to throw Himself on Christ as best he can after he is Baptized; he is at an absolute poverty of history, ecclesiastical shepherding and guidance, Sacramental Grace, Saintly and Angelic Intercession, and so many other good and perfect Gifts from the Father of Lights, crowned most perfectly by the Holy Eucharist.

After Holy Baptism, a Protestant's temporarily sinless and converted soul hungers for our Lord in the Eucharist and, not finding Him, is starving for the Lord and seeks Him with a passion, in a barren land with no sustenance, as in the desert of Sinai after crossing the Red Sea from Egypt, and having no Manna nor Divine Water. Make sure that you do not count the Lord's great Graces and Gifts as nothing and take them for granted: Love Him with a stronger zeal than a Protestant, and do not grow comfortable amidst the splendor and luxurious Grace of the Church; throw yourself upon Christ, utterly unite to His Passion of Love, if you aspire to His Resurrection of Glory. Embody the cry of the beloved to the Divine Lover in the Song of Songs; for this is the cry of the Blessed Virgin. As you place yourself in the Song of Songs and in that intimacy with the Divine Spouse, you are one with the Immaculate Heart of our Lady, where all the majestic stores of God's love are kept in an immense sea too deep to fathom. That sea of rushing, living water is the Holy Spirit; for she is the Seat of the Spirit.

As a hart (deer) longs for flowing streams, so longs my soul for thee, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and behold the face of God?- Psalm 42 (41):1-2

O God, thou art my God, I seek thee, my soul thirsts for thee; my flesh faints for thee, as in a dry and weary land where no water is. So I have looked upon thee in the sanctuary, beholding thy power and glory. Because thy steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise thee. So I will bless thee as long as I live; I will lift up my hands and call on thy name.- Psalm 63 (62):1-4

My soul languishes for thy salvation; I hope in thy word.- Psalm 119 (118):81

Jesus said to her, "Every one who drinks of this water will thirst again, but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst; the water that I shall give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."- Gospel according to St. John 4:13-14

Then he showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb...- Apocalypse 22:1

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God will help her right early.- Psalm 46 (45):4-5


'To faint away with the desire to love this great God more and more is little.'- St. Paul of the Cross


Lord Jesus Christ; Let me seek you by desiring you,
and let me desire you by seeking you;
let me find you by loving you,
and love you in finding you.
I confess, Lord, with thanksgiving,
that you have made me in your image,
so that I can remember you, think of you, and love you.
But that image is so worn and blotted out by faults,
and darkened by the smoke of sin,
that it cannot do that for which it was made,
unless you renew and refashion it.- St. Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, Doctor of the Church



If you do this, if these are the songs of you heart, the cry of your lips; if the Holy Spirit flowing from Jesus Christ is your only thirst, I can promise you, you will lead many Protestants to the fulness of truth. Carmelite spirituality and writers can help foster this sort of Divine intimacy and love in the devout Catholic.


2) It is utterly easy to see fragmented bits of vanity that we call knowledge of God and grasp at them and clutch them to your chest, instead of following God's reach through these sacramental accidents to God Himself. It is far better to have Wisdom the Person, than to clutch at and hold fragmented bits of knowledge, themselves brought down from infinite and staggering heights to fit inside our mind. We clutch at these facts and mull them over in our minds like a child clutches a teddy bear at the doctors office, hoping that it will impart to him courage and strength, and that it will protect him, when there is a Person in the Room that is giving Him a shot to truly strengthening him. We are in the room of this world, and the True Physician, Christ Himself, is waiting to strengthen us with His own self, with the only Cure that will simultaneously purge all that is offensive and sinful within us, and strengthen us into partaking of the Divine Nature: His Sacred Blood. We must realize our weakness, the pitiable frailty of all our exalted knowledge, and realize that all of these separate ideas turn into dust in our clutching hands if we do not surrender first to Absolute Truth and Love Himself, and allow Him to assume us and our knowledge that we know with us into Himself, and so bring all into Absolute Unity and Absolute Truth. In eternity, there will not be answers, but The Answer; not truths, but The Truth; not lights to guide our journey here on earth, but earth shattering Light Himself. All questions and all answers will melt away before His Face, and God shall be all in all. Transcendence can never fit entirely inside of our minds, but must instead work on us from His own volition of Will. Let us surrender in meekness to that Will to transform us.

3) It is near utterly impossible to successfully convey epiphanic truths about God to others that God lays on your heart to express. This is what God calls me to do with my blog, among other things, but it is humbling and difficult. The moment you try to, you find there are no words to express it, it melts in your hands, as you attempt to hand it on as a gift. This is because the principle that, yet again, divine Truth is so far transcendent above our own feeble minds, and the divine Word so much more excellent than our humble communication and speech, that even when God enlightens the mind, even then apart from the generous grace of God our lowly faculties betray us. Yet God has mercy on us, and bears with us lowly creatures, vastly sinful and imperfect though we are.

4) Metaphysical, ecstatically joyful, ultimate meaning Truth, and the brief moments when in an epiphany He comes as the Divine Lover and pierces the dense fogs of this life with His Light, and (rarely) makes Himself so cogently present to our soul; all this is nothing without loving suffering endured nobly on behalf of others and on behalf of the honor of Triune God our Savior, and the practical wisdom gained through physical, practical hard work over a lifetime of laying down your life for others, such as your family. Both complement each other, and our Lord's coming to you in your innermost soul and enlightening it will not take root as a seed, sprouting unto the plant of Eternal Life, if you do not also bear His Passion and suffering in this life.

5) Truth, Beauty, and Goodness are all positively ethereal; that is, as quickly as they pop into your mind, they tend to disappear when you try to put them into action and into virtue in your life. This is not the fault of Truth, Beauty, and Goodness, but rather, ourselves as receivers and the ones who apply what is received to ourselves; we need God's grace to overcome our inherent tendency to lose our grip on Reality. This loss of a grip on Reality is the heart of sin, it is the exchanging of the Real, for the phony, Truth for a lie, Heaven for Hell, God, for the idol of your own will and ego, and in the end, if you do not put a stop to it by God's grace, Reality will separate Himself from you, all Truth Beauty and Goodness will flee you, and you will collapse in on yourself into the abysmal void of nothingness that is your own soul disconnected from the Source of all Life. This is your state in Hell. Only the One who descended to the realm of the dead has gone deep enough to descend into the already crumbling mess that is your soul and hold it up until it can be fully renovated in Him.

6) God uses the times when we are most broken-down and weak to overshadow us by His Spirit and renew our minds in His Truth. Fasting works in this way, and mortification as well; and in a much smaller way but on the same principle, I find myself thinking with the most clarity of God and His grace, and life in Him, when I am most tired. I have often been praying in dark, early hours of the very, very late night, sunk into contemplative prayer and meditating on our Lord, and I find at my weakest, I am most sensitive to His still, small voice in my soul.

Just a few thoughts that came to me late last night while I was in prayer and contemplating God.

3 comments:

  1. I do not deny the sentiments that you have woven throughout your article, but do have a few things to say:

    There is only one Holy Baptism: that which comes by water and words, imparts an indelible character on the soul and unites one to the Mystical Body of Christ, the Catholic Church. There is no holy or true Baptism into protestantism, and therefore, were an infant born to protestant parents baptized validly, the infant would be Catholic (until making a formal profession of heresy or embracing the schism to which his parents belong). If an adult who professed to be protestant were baptized validly, with no purpose to obey Christ's institution on earth, then, while his baptism imparts an indelible character it does not impart the theological and cardinal virtues into the man in order for him to work toward his salvation. His adherence to protestantism would be an impediment against the graces of his Baptism, but he would still be tied to the Mystical Body in the same way that a severed hand is tied to a physical body (it could be re-grafted or re-attached, but at this point it lays dead).

    As these baptized infants of protestant parents grow to adulthood, they starve spiritually for want of Confirmation and the Holy Eucharist. These sever themselves from the body and die when they arrive at the age of discretion and accept the teachings of false prophets (protestant ministers) as divine revelation, turning from or, by an evil will, remaining in ignorance of the signs of the divine handi-work present in the Catholic Church.

    It is only when they empty themselves of their spiritual investments in their own personal goodness and the goodness of their families that they are able to begin the process of removing the impediments to their baptismal graces.

    These people do not love His Divine Majesty when they profess to be protestant, but rather teach and believe doctrines and precepts of men. They love a false Christ whom they create and re-fashion as they desire. This is evident by the fact that they do not subject themselves to the only authority which Christ instituted on earth for their salvation (the Roman Pontiff), or by the fact they spurn Catholic doctrine regarding the real, true and substantial presence of Our Lord hidden under the veils of the Eucharistic species, or by the fact that they twist the scriptural words of Our Lord on the subject of the Eucharist to a mere metaphor, or by the fact that they contemn Apostolic tradition, exchanging it for novel traditions of men, etc.

    None of these people who adhere to protestant doctrine with an attempted absolute certitude, which doctrine comes to them by fallible and subjective ministers (or false prophets) rather than the true prophets of the Holy Gospels (Jesus Christ, Our Lord, and the Apostles and their Successors throughout the ages), are of good will. It is only those who are seekers of the truth, who do good and avoid evil, and who subject the rantings of these protestant ministers to right reason, believing them irrevokably only insofar as the minister is credible, showing signs of divine power behind his words (miracles, of which these ministers show none) and disbelieving where the minister proves incredible, showing no signs, but only the tinkling cymbals of words lacking charity.

    People who are baptized, confirmed and have received the Holy Eucharist bear a great burden not to let the gifts which God has bestowed go to waste...and this includes those who are baptized validly, but profess to be protestants.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Nicole, I'm not going to do a full response to your comment until I have a chance to read it thoroughly at an hour that is not so late, but I just wanted to say one thing right off the bat: I am personally a convert from protestantism to Catholicism, I strive for orthodoxy and fidelity to the ancient faith in all times; at the same time, however, having grown up in a Lutheran home and experienced it first-hand, there is much that can only be understood about protestants by living in their presence for years. First off: very few are scholars, having made any sort of serious study of theology or Church History, and many have never heard enough about Catholicism to even make informed decisions for or against it. There are many homogeneous, small-town communities of Lutheranism where people are born, grow up, and die without ever having met a single Catholic or having any inkling they are in a man-made system of heretical belief. These types of people are by and large ridiculously charitable and of extraordinary good-will, my own mother was of that type for many years, and my ancestors as well. I say all this simply to point out that you assume too much regarding their ill will or 'rejection' of the orthodox Faith of Ages.

      This is the background that I am coming from, and it is these sort of protestants that I'm referring to; not the Lutheran theologian and pastor who has categorically rejected orthodoxy and professed heresy knowingly, leading men to Hell and the reverential worship of mere bread and wine in Lutheran communion. They are the type that will have a high price to pay, and others like them.

      Delete
    2. I do very much appreciate your comments though, always. You have very valid and edifying things to say and contribute :) always love discussions with you.

      Delete