In our falling and rising, we begin to experience grace
Faith in My fatherhood will be the path of healing for many, who, like you, were kept from growing up in freedom and joy beneath the gaze of their father. I want to banish fear from your life. I want you to feel loved and surrounded by My presence as Father—a presence that supports you, that will not hold you back from becoming the man that I have always wanted you to be; a presence that will allow you, in turn, to become a father, a father in My image, a father as My Jesus was fully a father in the midst of His disciples. They discovered My fatherhood in His countenance. 1 They sensed it in drawing close to His Heart, they
A Benedictine Monk. In Sinu Jesu: When Heart Speaks to Heart
--The Journal of a Priest at Prayer (Kindle Locations 331-335). Angelico Press. Kindle Edition.
The primacy of love is often overlooked. Many families have situations that are passed on from one generation to the next, were love and tenderness were never part of family life. If when young, we were never truly loved by our Father, as well as our Mother, this can lead to a life of seeking to find that ‘perfect’ relationship. However, what happens is that both men, and women, will end up marrying into what they know, relationships that are destructive for both parties.
To be seen, as well as loved, has a grounding effect on the soul. We do not have to seek it since we have it when our parents cherish us. If that is not experienced, then that hole that within needs to be filled. So we unknowingly look for the love not given to us when young. Or, if any kind of love was experienced, it was based on earning it through compliance.
Christians, also have to deal with this reality. How can the Fatherhood of God, have any meaning for those who have never known the manly, protective, love of a father. When we feel alone, fear can be a dominant factor in our lives. We can act out in many ways. Rage, sexual excess, overeating, alcohol and drugs addiction are a common way to seek to medicate ourselves. Which fails. Power, control, and dominance are ways of seeking to control the world and to get what we seek, which is often hidden by other goals that leave the heart empty and even angrier.
When we live in a world like ours, that is a rough place for everyone, it is very difficult to even believe in any kind of god, let alone in the Father that Jesus revealed to the world. Christian often portray God the Father like many earthly fathers, with deep emotional problems. It is all that many know. So the limited love of any human being is the prototype of God.
It is easy to understand punishment, revenge, torture, and rejection. It brings out some sort of comfort if we can believe in a God really not much better than we are. I believe that Christ Jesus came to dispel those idols. It is hard enough, today, to believe in God. Even harder to believe in the Fatherhood of God that Jesus wished to proclaim to the world.
It is easily forgotten that we are commanded not to judge. For when we judge, we are often operating from an idol of God that is just like us, only bigger and meaner, and who can torture for eternity. Not sure that is what Jesus was trying to portray to us. Perhaps to give our trust into the arms of a loving God is one of the hardest act of faith that we can make.
The spiritual journey is partly about allowing ourselves to experience our inner chaos and turmoil without seeking to medicate ourselves in order to escape. There is no escape, all we can do is to carry our cross, knowing we are not alone and in that comes healing, that flows from grace. In that, in our falling and rising, we begin to experience the grace, faithfulness, and love of the Father as revealed in Jesus Christ.—Br.MD