Thursday, March 15, 2012

My God, My God, Why Have You Abandoned Me?

Through her mystical experiences and dialogues with God, St. Catherine of Siena once exclaimed that God is a mad lover!  How so?  Most of us, if not all, would find it extremely difficult or even impossible at the thought of dying the way Jesus did for those who we love, not to mention those who trespassed against us.  Yet, the Lord of heaven and earth, who has no need of anyone or anything to make him happy, wondrously brought into existence this world that we live in and all it holds.  Out of his very loving mercy, God created men and women in his own image, to share in his happiness and dominion over all things that he has created.  Still, in our pride, we sinned and rebelled against our own Creator.  If our merciful God, who has “knitted us together in our mother’s womb,” truly abandoned us each time we sinned, we and the world would not be in existence to this day.  Scripture teaches us that God loves us so much that he sent his only begotten son in our human flesh to suffer and die for us, sinners that we are.  Thus, Jesus Christ, the faithful high priest, willingly took on our human nature, and gave himself up to be tested and suffered alongside with us, in every way except sin (Heb 2:17, 4:15).

In the commentary on the psalms, St. Augustine tells us that it was our humanity that was hung on the cross and Christ nailing our weakness to the cross cried out with the very voice of our humanity…God could give no greater gift to us than to make his Word our head and join us to him.  Therefore, our Lord Jesus Christ prays for us as our priest; he prays in us as our head, and he is the object of our prayers as our God. Suffering is an essential part of being human and Jesus did not hesitate to become a suffering servant for our sake, and “while we thought of him as stricken, struck down by God and afflicted…he was pierced for our offenses, crushed for our sins.  Upon him was the chastisement that makes us whole.  By his wounds we were healed.”  (Is. 53: 4-5).

Could there be any greater love? We have not a God who looks down on us from a distance after he created us, but a God who has gone through and knows our sufferings and can sympathize with us in our weaknesses and struggles.  If anyone of us is still not convinced of God’s merciful love, let us study the cross and let us go before the Blessed Sacrament, where we can visibly see and experience how madly in love with mankind our God is, who keeps his promise to be with us always, even until the end of time.  So through Christ, with Christ and in Christ, we, as contemplative nuns, gather together seven times a day on behalf of the Church and the people of God, to give praise to the Father of mercies and cry out with one voice for God’s grace upon the Church and all her children.  Deo Gratias!

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