Thursday, October 9, 2014

To Face the World

Cloister of the heart is a place of refuge. It is a place inviolate, where I can remain with Jesus in a traffic jam, a restaurant, a mall.  "The heart is the dwelling place where I am, where I live," states the Catechism." ... the heart is the place 'to which I withdraw.'  The heart is our hidden center,  beyond the grasp of our reason and of others; only the Spirit of God can fathom the human heart and know it fully. (Catechism of the Catholic Church #2563) 

Sometimes I want to hide deep within this refuge, in a quiet corner far from news reports, rumors of wars, political distresses, moral confusion, fears of illness, celebrations of sin, and input from a world going mad. Sometimes I simply want to close the blinds on windows and grilles.

But Our Lord has not called me to live inside a physical enclosure. In our cloistered heart analogy, the "symbol" is grillwork... not brick walls. 

"The Name of the Lord is a strong tower; the just man runs into it and is safe.” (Proverbs 18:10)

What is my strong tower? Not stonework. That would be much too fragile. 

Stones are subject to crumbling. The Name of the Lord is not.  

I am not called to flee from the world. I'm called to face it, day after day after day, but I do not have to do so unaided. I am called to relate to the world through the will of God. I can pray for the world - and deal with every situation and every person I encounter or even hear of - through the "grillwork" of the will of God.  I can run to Our Lord and I can remain in Him.  

As I cling to Jesus, He gives me all I need to face the world.

"We know that God makes all things work together for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his decree." (Romans 8:28)

"I consider the sufferings of the present to be as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed in us." (Romans 8:18)

"God keeps his promise. He will not let you be tested beyond your strength.  Along with the test he will give you a way out of it so that you may be able to endure it." (1 Corinthians 10:13)
'Even though I walk through a dark valley, I fear no evil, for You are at my side.' (Psalm 23:4)

'Be firm and steadfast! Do not fear nor be dismayed, for the Lord, your God, is with you wherever you go.' (Joshua 1:9)

'We are afflicted in every way possible, but we are not crushed; full of doubts, we never despair.  We are persecuted but never abandoned; we are struck down but never destroyed.' (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)

'The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is my life's refuge; of whom should I be afraid?' (Psalm 27:1)

'You are my shelter; from distress you keep me.  With safety, You ring me around.' (Psalm 32:7)

'God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble. Thus we do not fear, though the earth be shaken and the mountains quake to the depths of the sea; though its waters rage and foam and mountains totter at its surging. The Lord of hosts is with us.  Our stronghold is the God of Jacob.' (Psalm 46:2-4)

'Though my flesh and heart fail, God is the rock of my heart; my portion forever.' (Psalm 73:26)

'Our help is in the Name of the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.' (Psalm 124:8)

1 comment:

  1. So beautiful, Nancy! So encouraging. I find I want to flee from the world at times...especially lately. Like you..I'm clinging to Jesus while facing the world...though I'd rather hide behind Him and just peek at it! xx