Good Afternoon, God!
Today is Ash Wednesday and I suppose I should be solemn and focused on Your Sacrifice. But, this has been a Day Filled With Joy!
And, now that I think about it, maybe that is WHY You came — so that we could have Life and have it Abundantly. You say to us Love God, and Love your Neighbor as you Love Yourself.
But, we are fragile — just like this lovely maidenhair fern. And from our days in our mother’s womb we hear voices that are frightened, fearful, or maybe angry. We grow up in families that — at best, tease us — and at worst X us. Then we go to school and learn to conform to the rules . . . being named good or smart if we succeed, bad or dumb if we don’t.
Then, we go to Church and learn to care about the Poor — which we learn means Not Us — and to be humble and self-sacrificing.
So, God, what I am trying to say is — it is really HARD to love ourselves! And, when we judge and condemn ourselves — we then turn and judge and condemn those around us. Sigh.
Now, John told us in 1 John 4:19 “We love because He has first loved us.” And, I am quite certain, God, that You do love us — all of us! Fr. Boyle said in Tattoos on the Heart that a big lie has come into the world — the lie is that some souls are more worthy than other souls. Sigh.
But, God, it is very hard for us to accept the reality that You Love us! We just don’t believe it. Well, maybe in our Heads but not in our Heart or Gut.
Thankfully, You are sneaky! You start us off by telling us to love and care for the Poor . . . and then wait for us to realize that we too, ARE the Poor. Thank You!