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Risen Lamb Writings
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"Risen Lamb Writings"

"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 "apostasy from the truth" (see CCC 675). Many today join Pontius Pilate in asking Jesus the question: "What is truth?" (John 18:38). St. Gregory the Great has said, "For anyone who does not love the truth has not yet come to know it" (St. Gregory the Great, cited in the LH, vol. II, p. 753). Jesus is "the True light, which enlightens everyone" (John 1:9), and his word "is a lamp for my feet, a light for my path" (Ps. 119:105).       

       Unfortunately, one reason why many people today are afraid to trust the truth of God is that they are not experiencing God personally in their lives. One reason for this may be that today more and more people seem to be afraid of silence and stillness. The voice of God is heard best within a silent heart: "Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice" (John 18:37). Today prayer warriors, "waist deep" in the living water of the Holy Spirit, are called to beg God for the urgent grace humanity needs to return to our heart. "The heart is our hidden center" (CCC 2563). There is a dire need, not so much to know more about God, but rather to experience—to come to know—God in the depths of our being. In Ps. 87:7 God speaks to every heart: "Within you is my true home."

          The Catechism of the Catholic Church states (in CCC 2563) that "The heart is the place of decision…it is the place of truth…it is the place of encounter…it is the place of covenant." Truth, then, is intimately associated with the heart, with decisive choice, encounter and covenant. The Dictionary of Biblical Theology states, "The biblical notion of truth is founded on the religious experience of encounter with God" (p. 618). In Jesus Christ God and humanity meet, divine and human natures embrace, and heaven and earth unite. Jesus brings humanity into the immediacy of God's presence! We have been created for encounter with God. The biblical notion of covenant connotes a life of communion with God, an exclusive relationship of love, fidelity, interior knowledge of God, heart and commitment—a "marriage" between God and His people.   This concept reaches its fulfillment in Jesus, the Mediator of the New and Eternal covenant in his Blood. He is the Bridegroom of the Church.

 Ps. 45 is entitled, 'Song for a Royal Wedding'. Verses 4-5 read:

"Gird your sword upon your hip, mighty warrior! In splendor and majesty ride on triumphant! In the cause of truth and justice may your right hand show you wondrous deeds."

Intercessors engage in the cause of truth and justice which is the cause of Jesus in the world. The dictionary tells us that a cause is "a goal or principle served with dedication and zeal; the interests or a person or group engaged in a struggle." Intercessors enter into the "struggle" of Jesus by waging war against the spirit of the world, the flesh and the devil (all of which are set in opposition and resistance to authentic truth and justice)—first of all within one's own self, then on behalf of others.

More and more people seem to be pushing authentic truth (the "real") about God and humanity--and hence, moral truth--to the periphery of their lives. At times, this dismissal of truth is done with a blatant, willful disregard. Repentance is the "royal road" of return to the "real" for everyone. Although this is always a costly grace for an intercessor to pray for on behalf of others, one must always keep in mind that souls are at stake—and Eternal destiny!

Pope John Paul II has written insightfully about this current predicament:

We "are made holy by "obedience to the truth" (Pet. 1:22). This obedience is not always easy. As a result of that mysterious original sin, committed at the prompting of Satan, the one who is "a liar and the father of lies" (John 8:44), man is constantly tempted to turn his gaze way from the living and true God in order to direct it towards idols (cf. 1 Thess. 1:9) exchanging "the truth about God for a lie" (Rom. 1:25). Man's capacity to know the truth is also darkened, and his will to submit to it is weakened. Thus, giving himself over to relativism and skepticism (cf. John 18:38), he goes off in search of an illusory freedom apart from truth itself" (Pope JP II, Encyclical Letter, "Veritatis Splendor"   # 1).

There is no authentic freedom apart from the "splendor of truth". St. Paul reminds the Galatians, "For freedom Christ set us free; so, stand firm" (Gal. 5:1). Jesus tells his disciples, "The truth will set you free" (John 8:32). This truth is found in Jesus and in his word (see John 8:31).

          Truth, then, is also very much related to obedience, faith, love, and experiential knowledge: I will obey the One whom I have come to believe in (see 2Thess. 2:13). I will believe in the One whom I have come to love (see 2Thess. 2:10). I will love the One whom I have opened myself to know intimately in the depths of my heart:

"Him whose beauty eternally awes the blessed hosts of heaven; to him whose love inspires love, whose contemplation refreshes whose generosity satisfies, whose gentleness delights, whose memory shines sweetly as the dawn; to him whose fragrance revives the dead, and whose glorious vision will bless all the citizens of that heavenly Jerusalem" (From a letter…by St. Clare, virgin, cited in LH, vol. IV, p. 1310).     

Questions:

1)      As an intercessor am I zealous for the "cause" of Jesus in the world?

2)      Is repentance part of my life of prayer?              

Scriptures:

Any scripture from the text; John 4:23-24; John17:17; 1Tim. 3:15; 2Tim.2:25

"TWO-ZERO-ONE-SEVEN, TIME TO STORM HEAVEN"

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