Twenty years ago today, on this great Solemnity of Our Lady, I was baptized into the death of Jesus Christ, to rise with Him in the Resurrection. I was sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit in Confirmation, and received my Lord and Savior in the Most Holy Eucharist for the first time as I was incorporated into his Mystical Body, His Bride, the Church,
What a ride it's been! The Lord's mercies are everlasting! In a talk back in 2001, then Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio said these remarkable words, which burned into my soul as I read them the night of his election to the Throne of St. Peter:
"Only someone who has encountered mercy, who has been caressed by the tenderness of mercy, is happy and comfortable with the Lord. ... I dare to say that the privileged locus of the encounter is the caress of the mercy of Jesus Christ on my sin."
I know this to be so true. He has sought me in so many ways all these years. I have returned but a meager love, a paltry love, halting and meandering; a reluctant, reticent, repentance; a heart mired in self-love, that hearkens still to the sibilant sound of sin; a heart that has been and is, so haughty and oh so prideful. Yet He loves.
Yet He loves.
He never stops. His grace, one sweet drop at a time, burning and delightful, tears down the walls of pride, and heals the wayward will. The old man dies, as the new man laboriously comes forth.
Absorbeat quaeso, Domine, mentem meam et cor meum, ignita et meliflua vis amoris tui, de omnibus quae in mundo sunt, ut amore amoris tui moriar, qui amore amoris mei dignatus es mori.
"May my soul and my heart, O Lord, be absorbed, I pray, by the fiery honey-like power of your love, from all that is in the world, so that I may die for love of your love, who deigned to die for love of my love." (St. Francis)
Sweet Mother, who have been so faithful, so devoted to me, this unworthy fool, draw me ever closer to Him. On this anniversary of my consecration to Christ in holy baptism, I consecrate myself again to you, to your Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart. Pray that one day after traversing this land of exile, I will rejoice with you and the Heavenly Host, to behold Him face to face, your Son, Jesus Christ Our Lord, the desire of the nations, my Lord, my Savior, my King, my joy, my love, my all.
Please join me in praying a Te Deum today!
[This was posted on Facebook on August 14, 2014]