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Risen Lamb Writings
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Risen Lamb Writings
During this season of the Resurrection we are reminded that Jesus invites intercessors to encounter him in his crucified-resurrected humanity. In him we see what ‘death destroyed, life restored’ looks like: “Once I was dead, but now I am alive for ever and ever” (Rev. 1:18).
The Four Chambers of Love
In John 7:37-38, Jesus says: “Let anyone who thirsts come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as scripture says: ‘Rivers of living water will flow from within him’”.
The Wonderful Stream
Together, Sts. Matthew, Mark and Luke each relate that at the moment of Jesus’ death, the veil in the sanctuary in the temple was torn in two (Mt. 27:51;Mark 15:38;Luke 23:45).
The Eastern Flow of Intercession (Part One)
The Heart of Jesus is the ‘innermost Sanctuary’ of the Temple which is his Body. His heart is “The Sanctuary of sanctuaries and the Love of loves” (The Admirable Heart of Mary. St. John Eudes, p. 261).
The Eastern Flow of Intercession (Part Two)
The pierced Heart of Jesus is the “heart wound” of God’s Love. From his opened side a paschal outpouring of the living water of the Holy Spirit--impacting water--flows out to the “desert of the world”. From the wellspring of Jesus’ pierced Heart, “rivers of renewal” issue forth: Saving grace flowing from a “Sacred- Space”.
The Eastern Flow of Intercession (Part Three)
The Prophet Ezekiel wades in the “sacred flow” of living water that comes from the temple altar and continues to flow out into the “desert of the world”. Ezekiel wades in intervals of 1,000 cubits. Now at 3,000 cubits we read in Ezek. 47:4B, “Again he measured off a thousand and had me wade; the water was up to my waist.” A maturing intercessor whose life is more “immersed” in God is called to pray into yet another area of need.
The Eastern Flow of Intercession (Part Four)
In the vision depicted in Ezekiel 47:1-12, the Prophet Ezekiel (in Ezek. 47:4B) wades in the “sacred flow” of living water which comes from the temple altar: “The water was up to my waist.” For intercessors this waist-level water depth can symbolize an urgent “breach” where intense intercession is needed today. In Eph. 6:14, St. Paul says, “Stand fast with the truth as the belt around your waist.” We are currently living at a time when there is a growing “apostacy from the truth” (see CCC 675).
“The Eastern Flow of Intercession” (Part Five)
The vision depicted in Ezekiel 47 culminates at a distance of 4,000 cubits from the temple where, as the Prophet Ezekiel states, “There was now a river through which I could not wade; for the water had risen so high that it had become a river that could not be crossed except by swimming” (Ezek. 47:5). The river is a “river for universal renewal”.
“The Right Side”
In John 21 we read of a third appearance of the risen Jesus to his disciples--this time at the Sea of Tiberias. The seven disciples are in a boat, and they have caught no fish that night. Standing on the shore, Jesus says something to them that may seem enigmatic: “Cast the net over the right side of the boat and you will find something” (John 21:6).
“The Wound of Love”
In contemplative prayer, intercessors are drawn to the “King's gate”--the “gate” of the wounded side of Jesus. Here, we “drink freely of love” (Songs 5:1): The life-giving spring that flows from his pierced heart. With the fullness of desire, we experience how sweet and agreeable he is.
“The Narrow Gate”
The “gate” of the wounded side of the Lamb is also the “narrow gate”; for, it is the “gate” of exclusive, committed, sacrificial love--a fully-focused, covenant love. It is the gate of life, the gate of “fierce friendship” with the Lamb who was slain. The daily disciplines of devoted love--contemplative communion, self-renunciation, loving sacrifice, forgiveness, and intercession (to name a few)--keep one living close to the pierced heart of the Lamb.
“The New Gate”
The whole work of the redemption is a great renewal--a new creation--and God is the Author of this newness: “Behold I make all things new” (Rev. 21:5). Jesus, the “New Temple”, is the locus of God's presence among us. He is the “new humanity”. Hence, the pierced heart of Jesus is a “new reality”. What comes forth from the “breached wall” of the New Temple is new: A new flow of blood and water for the renewal of the world.
“The Life Blood of this Charism”
From the wounded side of the Lamb flows the “life blood” of this charism of communal, contemplative, intercessory prayer; for, this blood is life; this water is living water. This is the sacred flow that unites intercessors with the “chalice” of Jesus' pierced heart--a heart that bears a love that is stronger than death:
“The Luminous Flow”
“The Dogmatic Constitution on the Church”, one of the central writings of Vatican Council II, opens with these words: “Christ is the light of humanity” (LG 1). Jesus is the only “Saving Light”. It is God's will that all people receive the light of Jesus into their hearts and minds. For, “he came as the “light of the world”, he is the Truth” (CCC 2466): 'Light from Light, true God from true God'.
“Whispers of Light” (part one)
In 1Kings 19, we read of the Prophet Elijah who, once strengthened by food provided by God, walks forty days and forty nights to the mountain of God, Horeb. On the mountain, Elijah hears God speak to him in a “a tiny whispering sound” (1 Kings 19:12). Here, Elijah receives key revelation from God on what he is to do next (see 1 Kings 19:15-18).
“Whispers of Light” (part 2)
Jesus, the Word of God on high, the fountain of wisdom, offers us a share in his seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, the “mystical treasures” that flow from his pierced heart. These “whispers of light” grow in the context of an intimate union with the Lamb. The first of these gifts that we consider is the gift of wisdom. In doing so, we will speak first of all of Wisdom Incarnate, Jesus Christ.
“Whispers of Light” (part 3)
Jesus is love crucified. The wisdom of God--like all seven of the gifts of the Holy Spirit--comes to us through the pierced heart of the Lamb, love crucified. The wisdom of God appears in the context of covenant: The bond of inseparable love between God and humanity. The pierced heart of the Lamb is the wellspring of New Covenant Love. Each of the seven mystical treasures of the Spirit is offered in the context of New Covenant Love.
“Whispers of Light” (part 4)
Because we have been created for God, for the light of his truth and life, we have been created for the gift of the Holy Spirit of wisdom as well. Wisdom “feeds” our “spiritual taste buds” because it is eternal light--a mystical whisper of light from God spoken into our hearts. The gift of wisdom gives one a 'taste' for God and his truth. This enables one to come alive spiritually, to grow maturely, and to desire to intercede and offer generously.
“Whispers of Light” (part 5)
Any overview of the gift of the Holy Spirit of wisdom is incomplete without speaking of the Blessed Virgin Mary. St. Louis de Montfort says of Mary, “She became the mother, mistress and throne of divine wisdom” (The Love of Eternal Wisdom, by St. Louis de Montfort, p. 203). These three titles reference her to each of the divine persons of the Trinity. Mary holds a unique, special place in the “heart” of the Trinity.
“Whispers of Light” (part 6)
One of Mary's great desires is to share her faith, her fiat, her total surrender to God and her relationship with the Trinity with each of us. How important it is that intercessors be open to receive these priceless Marian treasures. For, a “Marian-formed”, intercessor's heart is a “powerhouse of prayer”.
“Whispers of Light” (part 7)
At the Annunciation Mary's “yes”--“May it be done to me according to your word”--was given both for life and death, receiving and offering, victimhood and victory, joy and sorrow, for “nightfall when weeping enters in” and for “the dawn” when there is “rejoicing” (see Psalm 30:6)! Mary's soul proclaims both “the greatness of the Lord” (see Luke 1:46), and “the death of the Lord” (see 1 Cr. 11:26). These are all aspects of her perpetual fiat that she desires to unite intercessors to.
“Whispers of Light” (part 8)
“God so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (John 3:16). Mary,in turn, so loved God that she gave her full consent, conceived and gave birth to the Father's only Son in a human nature, served his mission fully, and uniting her suffering with his on Calvary, offered him back to the Father for the sake of the world. No human being has ever loved Jesus as dearly and served his mission as perfectly as the Blessed Virgin Mary.
“Whispers of Light” (part 9)
The word, “sword”, contains within it the word, “word”. Jesus, the Word himself, has come to bring a sword to humanity--a sword of decision. Each person must take a stand in regard to the Lamb. One is either for him or against him, either accepts or rejects him, believes in him or does not. Jesus comes to engage the will of every person. Each of Mary's seven swords of sorrow comes through her willful choice to be with her Son and to identify with him in the mysteries of his life. For Mary these are “participatory swords”.
“Whispers of Light” (part 10)
Mary is forever associated with “the fullness of time”, the particular moment in salvation history when the Father sent Jesus into the world through her to be our ransom from sin and death. In this fullness of time, Jesus and Mary fully embraced the Father's will, fully cooperated, and freely and fully consented to what the Father asked of them. Jesus is the only Son of God and our saving victim. Mary is his Mother and unique co-sufferer. There was a unified suffering and purpose shared between them.
“ A Fatima Centennial Reflection”
One hundred years ago Mary was sent on mission from Heaven as “Ambassador” of God's will--Ambassador of God's Heart--to a secluded town in Portugal. There, she formed three little children in a global mission of intercession. In this hidden, “deserted” place, Mary schooled Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta in prayer of the heart. In the Gospel of St. Matthew in the scene of the story of the multiplication of the loaves and fish, the disciples say to Jesus, “This is a deserted place” (see Mt. 14:15). God delights in performing miracles in deserted, out of the way places.
“ Whispers of Light (part 11)”
There is a great need today for prayer circles gathered around Mary-- “circles of fire”--comprised of a totally committed people of transformed heart, mind and will, and animated by the power of the Holy Spirit. Yes, there is an urgent need for “upper rooms” of empowered, informed intercession, “cenacles” of sustained supplication guided by Mary's intercessory influence, her pleading power.
“ Whispers of Light” (part 12)
Mary teaches an intercessor how to receive from the heart and how to remain in contact with the mystery of God: “We have need of Mary to gain access to the mystery of Jesus in its entirety” (Jesus Living in Mary: Handbook of the Spirituality of St. Louis Marie de Montfort, p. 552). Since our call as intercessors is to perpetuate the redemptive mission of the Lamb of God, Mary's presence in our lives is essential.
“ Whispers of Light” (part 13)
From the moment of the Annunciation, Mary internalized and embraced fully the words spoken to her by God through the angel, Gabriel, “For nothing will be impossible for God” (Luke 1:37). These words were to become the very fabric of Mary's life of faith. She believed that from the “seed” of God's promise there would always come forth a “harvest” of fulfillment. At the Annunciation Mary entrusted herself with all her heart, mind and will to the promise of God.
“Whispers of Light” (part 14)
Mary is a woman of daring, courageous and expectant f.a.i.t.h. (full assurance in things happening)--of bold, persevering and empowered prayer. One might call Mary a woman of “dare prayer” in the presence of God--a woman of ironclad intercession through whose faith God works miracles. If we are to expect “Marian miracles” through our communal intercession gathered around Mary, then there is great need today for intercessors to be formed in Mary's Immaculate Heart, and to be guided by her intercessory influence and pleading power.
“Whispers of Light” (part 15)
The upper room was a place of miracles, and today our intercessory prayer groups are invited into this upper room experience. In the upper room on the night before his death, Jesus spoke forth into common bread and wine the miracle of his “Eucharistic Love”: “This is my Body for you”; “This is my Blood for you.” The upper room was also the place of the miracle of Pentecost when the words of Jesus-- “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you” (Acts 1:8)--and the overshadowing and penetration of the Spirit brought forth the visibility of the Body of Jesus, the Church, in its members as new, living stones.
“Whispers of Light” (part 16)
At the “heart” of the mystery of the Incarnation is the truth that “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son” (John 3:16). At the “heart” of the mystery of Pentecost is the truth that God continued to so love the world that he gave the Spirit of his only Son. At Pentecost the word of God spoken through the Prophet, Ezekiel, was fulfilled: “I will put my spirit within you” (Ez. 36:27). The miracle occurred.
An Easter Earthquake
It is clear right now that the world is being shaken by the Corona virus--shaken not only by the disease aspect of the virus itself, but also shaken in fear of the unknown, shaken out of daily routines and life-styles--perhaps even shaken out of a sense of misplaced priorities and an attitude of taking many things for granted.
The Journey From Heart Burn to Burning Hearts
In one sense this Sunday's Gospel from St. Luke, the story of “the two disciples on the road to Emmaus”, depicts in story form the two parts of every Roman Catholic mass: The liturgy of the word; and the liturgy of the Eucharist. Jesus loves us so much that he comes to us in every mass to be with us.
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