— The Gaze from the Cross, Part 1 ( Please also read Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4) ‘I want to live beneath Your divine gaze, for You alone are enough for me. When I am with You, Jesus, I fear nothing, for nothing can do me harm.’ (306) Christ Crucified is God’s greatest expression of Mercy for us. His death is the Source of our life. During these 40 days, we are asking God to show us His Mercy so that Mercy might alter our perspective on everything. We are thus wise to fix our g
— Everything I Have is Yours ‘At the moment of Your death on the cross, You opened an inexhaustible spring of Mercy for us, giving us Your dearest possession, the Blood and Water from Your heart. Such is the omnipotence of Your Mercy. From it, all grace flows to us.’ (1747) Grumbling over the obvious Mercy extended to the prodigal, his ‘good’ brother received this from a generous father: ‘My son, you have always been with me, and everything I have is yours.’ (Lk. 15:31) ‘Ever
— Abundance for a Lonely Son ‘Jesus, Friend of a lonely heart, You are my haven, You are my peace. You are my salvation, You are my sovereignty in moments of struggle and amidst an ocean of doubt…You are everything to a lonely soul.’ (247) ‘The Parable of the Prodigal Son’ could just as well have been called ‘The Loneliness of His Older Brother.’ This story describes brilliantly two very different personalities with two very different responses to their generous father. The p
— ‘My Heart overflows with Mercy for souls, especially for poor sinners. If only they could understand that I am the best of Fathers to them, and that it is for them that the Blood and Water flowed from My Heart as from a fount overflowing with Mercy.’ (367) Jesus employed the Parable of the Prodigal Son (Lk. 15) to convey the marvel of the Father’s Mercy. No matter how much we have squandered what is best and true about our lives, the Father restores in full our inheritance
— ‘I am more generous towards sinners than to the just. It was for their sake that I came down from heaven; it was for their sake that My blood was spilled. Let them not fear to approach Me; they are most in need of My Mercy.’ (1275) Jesus sought out those with hearts hungry for the reign of His Kingdom. He describes that Kingdom in Luke 4:18 as good news for the poor, the imprisoned, the blind, and the oppressed. Missing from that Kingdom ‘call’ were dutiful members of the r
‘O Jesus, the more I have known You, the more ardently I have desired You.’ (591) This woman loved Jesus from a distance; she had witnessed His healings, listened to His teachings and been converted by His powerful love for the lost and the least. She was among them, ‘a sinful woman’, probably a prostitute. We can assume her shame and also her despair, until God revealed Himself to her. Before she met Jesus, the face of God for her was the Pharisee’s: exacting, decent, exclus
‘When the battle becomes too much for me, I throw myself like a child into the arms of the Heavenly Father and trust I will not perish…I do not lose heart. I trust God’s grace, which abounds in the worst misery.’ (606) Bad shame can trap us; the traditions of men are tricky. They may have truth on their side, but they forfeit the main rule which governs Jesus’ morality—Mercy for the sin-sick, who in turn extend Mercy out of a recognition of their own moral vulnerability. How
— ‘O inexhaustible spring of Divine Mercy, pour Yourself out upon us! Your goodness knows no limits. Confirm , O Lord, the power of Your mercy over the abyss of our misery, for You have no limits to Your mercies.’ (819) The Old Testament streams of mercy converge in the New Testament and well up into a fountain of ‘living water’. Jesus is that fountain. From Him flow rivers of Life that make the unclean pure, the weak strong, and the broken whole. Jesus embodies Mercy. He rel
— ‘The great sins of the world are superficial wounds on My Heart, but the sins of a chosen soul pierce My Heart through and through…’ (1702) After Jesus met me with Mercy in my waterless pit of sexual immorality, I turned from sin. I knew I was wrong. Running away from Jesus and His truth did not change the truth. Mercy enabled me to stop running and face the truth—I needed Him because of my sin. Like the angels imploring Lot to get out of Sodom, Mercy paved the way for my r
— ‘In spite of everything, Jesus, I trust You in the face of every sentiment which sets itself against hope.’ (14) Imprisoned by hope: Zechariah expressed well the exile of the Israelites (Zech. 9: 11-12). Far from their land, subject to the cruelty of other masters and their gods, the holy nation hoped against hope for mercy. The prophet reminded them of the covenant of blood God had made with them—unchanging, Almighty Mercy. ‘Because of my blood covenant with you, I will fr
‘Bring your ear close to My heart, forget everything else, and meditate upon My wondrous mercy.’ (229) God’s greatest attribute is Mercy. It is the foundation of who He is; it is the way He wants to deal with us. In truth, Mercy is the only way we can know God. Through Mercy, God realigns His troubled, off-track and much loved child with Himself. The Creator unites Himself to the creature through Mercy. Throughout this fast, our central meditation will be upon Jesus, God’s on
Please join us from October 15th –Nov. 23rd for a 40-day fast centering on the power of Mercy. Drawing upon the inspiration of a young Polish nun who received a vision and much wisdom about Jesus’ heart of mercy for an unfaithful world, we shall seek Him daily as we cry out for all broken ones to welcome Him. Together we will prayerfully represent sin-weary humanity before the Father, asking the Source of Mercy to open our hearts to His merciful cure. In particular, we will l
Not a good idea. My motives were impure—I wanted to have fun again, and the peculiar Christians I had met were not fun. Needless to say, I immediately returned to my old habits. Only this time it was not fun. I found myself guilty, ill at ease with new ‘friends’, feeling and acting false. I was not being true to the stream of new life coursing through me. I had to stifle the Spirit in me to dance with other spirits. I loved the French family. But they did not know what to do
‘He is risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid Him.’ (Mk 16:6) Resurrection is reunion: Jesus, torn from His Father, now returns to Him. Evil demanded payment: crucifixion, the vast distance between God and God.
Love crossed over that gap, conquering sin and death. Resurrection is the ultimate Father/Son reunion. Every Easter, God extends to us a fresh invitation to reenter that reunion.
Jesus descended into hell to get us out of there.
He rose again into perf
‘But I cry to you for help, O Lord; in the morning my prayer comes before you.
Why, O Lord, do you reject me and hide your face from me?
I have suffered your terrors and am in despair. Your wrath has swept over me;
Your terrors have destroyed me. All day long they surround me like a flood;
They have completely engulfed me.
You have taken my companions from me; the darkness is my closest friend.’
PS 88:13-18 Jesus’ rejection, abuse, and murder at the hands of men were not His
We might receive foot-washing and communion and yet still not grasp the cross. Perhaps our need for that cross is not yet clear. We may still believe in our own capacity to follow Him, the self-inspired power of allegiance to Jesus. Peter the ‘Rock,’ full of bluster and unrefined zeal, helps us here. He believed himself to be among the most radical followers of Jesus. Pride came before his fall on the eve of Jesus’ crucifixion. Until the midnight hour, Peter continued to be s
Maundy Thursday makes one thing perfectly clear. It is God’s faithfulness that makes us faithful. On this night of foot-washing and communion, we behold the full extent of God’s love toward us. Mercy takes on new meaning as Jesus grants us tokens of the cross that awaits Him. He washes away our filth; He feeds us with bread from heaven. Foreseeing our departure from Him, He grants us powerful assistance for our return. In His faithful love, we see our unfaithfulness. Here we
In His mercy, Jesus redeems our suffering. Some of the sorrow we submit to Him is not of particularly noble origins—it may be, as we have seen, the bad fruit of our sin, or the normal wounds and losses we sustain this side of Heaven. He loves us to the extent that He will take every opportunity to invite us to surrender our sins and wounds. He grants us ‘cross-time’: an opportunity to receive and extend mercy. He makes us that much more fruitful in love. But suffering for wha
During Holy Week, we pause to consider Jesus’ cross and the smaller one He asks us to carry. The goal? To know Him more. Perhaps He will invite you in these days to ‘keep watch with Him’ in His suffering. We take another step toward Calvary by considering the ways we have been sinned against. He has not suffered only for our sins and foolishness; His cross-walk had as much to do with the gaps and gashes we bear due to others’ sins. Isaiah 53:4, 5 says it best: ‘Surely He bore
A tendency of most Christians is to want to enter into relationship with Christ through His cross but to want to avoid that same cross in our own lives. No-where is this more apparent than in how we deal with our personal sin. We will go to great lengths to deny our sin, and the suffering that we cause ourselves and others due to our sin. It offends us. We are in good company. I love how Peter, whom Jesus had just named as the Rock of the Church, refused the truth of the cros