The Good News of Jesus Christ, as the Franciscans understood it, is that we do not “go to God” as if God sat in the starry heavens awaiting our arrival; rather, God has “come to us” in the Incarnation. “The eternal God has humbly bent down,” Bonaventure wrote, “and lifted the dust of our nature into unity with his own person.” We move toward God because God has first moved toward us—this is the Franciscan path of prayer.
~Ilia Delio, Franciscan Prayer
Imagine for a moment what you could learn about God’s revelation if you would set aside for just one day, even just one hour, your need to be right, your need to be safe, your need to be in charge. Imagine if you set these aside and fully, truly accepted that the Lord would never leave you to destruction, never forsake you to an eternal death. What could you learn? How would you grow? Think for a moment about the locks you put on your trust, on your love, on your hope. How many are there? Can you count them? Do you believe that hoarding the gifts God has given you will earn you compound interest in heaven? Or that a cautious, meager charity will benefit you in the long run? Gifts left unused for the good of your neighbors will eventually atrophy and die, leaving behind a bitter waste, an angry, soured soul. There is nothing child-like about living your life in resentment and disappointment. Our Father will never abandon us. What is there for us to fear? Nothing. Nothing at all.
Fr. Philip Neri Powell, OP, Ph.D., Domine, da mihi hanc aquam!, “Only the child-like”.
Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither.
~C.S. Lewis (Found on the website of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity)
Faith gives the whole earth a celestial aspect; by it the heart is transported, enraptured to commune with heaven. Each moment is a revelation of God.
~Jean-Pierre de Caussade, The Sacrament of the Present Moment