Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

Posts Tagged ‘water’

The Final offering of Fulton J Sheen on Asceticism…

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on February 17, 2018

God Love You!

There is a greater potential for sacrifice in the hearts and minds of men now, than at any time in the last 400 years:

[When it comes] to the devotees of Totalitarianism of the last 30 years, the fanaticism, the burning zeal and the blazing devotedness of Communism, [would this have happened had] not that these souls… become sick and tired of the milk and water [of] Liberalism that denied there was a TRUTH worth dying for and therefore one worthy of living for?

[Such as] the sacrifice of soldiers during [war], and at a time when we’re supposed to have softened by luxury and ease, [were it] not because a tremendous reserve for sacrifice was in the depths of their hearts?

The world is fed-up with broad-mindedness which is as cold as a miser’s heart and as spineless as a filet of sole; it wants to catch fire, to feel the burning heat of its passions and above all, to love even to the point of death:

“I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and would that it were already kindled! have a baptism to be baptized with; and how I am constrained until it is accomplished!” ~Jesus of Nazareth, (Luke 12:49-50)

“Greater love has no man than this, that he would lay his life down for his friends”. ~John 15:13

We of the Faith are often frightened away by the sight of ashes and the clinkers in the furnace of the faithless, little suspecting that beneath them are flames that like [of] St Paul could enkindle the world, and like [of] St Magdalen set fire to penitential hearts:

“God and His Holy Mother will raise up saints who will surpass in holiness saints of old; they will fight in PRAYER with one hand and build with the other…over throwing and CRUSHING heresies and heretics…they will rebuild the true ‘temple of Solomon’, the ‘City of God’. They will be ministers [lay and ordained] of the Lord who, like a flaming fire, will enkindle everywhere the fires of Divine Love.” ~St. Louis de Montfort, The True Devotion of Mary, #48, 56

Pray! And the LOVE which you will experience from His (Jesus) nearness will give you the strength to make ready for the Works of Love which you will do in His name… Therefore, my children, love all who do not know my Son, so that through prayer, and the LOVE which comes through prayer, that they might become better. That the goodness in them can win.” Message to Mirjana, June 2nd and July 2, 2017, in part.

What greater proof is there of this, than the fact that when these modern pagans receive the gift of Faith, they often surpass us in self-denial and therefore Love of God.

In some instances, what keeps them back is a want of correspondence on our part between light and heat, or the divorce between our knowledge of Divine Truth and the self-renouncing love which that TRUTH should inspire.

Because the joys of union with God cannot be experienced without sacrifice, and because the modern souls without Faith has a capacity for it, we believe that Divine Truth should be presented to them as the Savior did, namely, by a Summons to Sacrifice, by an appeal to sell the field to gain the pearl of great price, and to leave nets and boats to become fishers of men.

Again, the kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls, who, on finding one pearl of great value, went and sold all that he had and bought it. ~Mt 13:45-46

And Jesus said to them, “Follow Me and I will make you become fishers of men.” And immediately they left their nets and followed Him. ~Mk 1:17-18

Everyone today is in pain, either mental or physical. Where there are no broken bodies, there are agonized minds, restless, fearful, anxious.

Our generation [BOTH his and ours] may well be the most unhappy that has lived in the history of Christianity. All this adds up to the fact that suffering is universal.

But suffering is not far from sacrifice. There is no quantitative difference between the two, for a toothache in a saint is no different from a toothache in a Stalin.

There is no material difference between a Carmelite fasting from meat and bread, and a fat lady dieting from the same.

What makes the difference [We should ask] between suffering and sacrifice, between fasting and dieting…?

[PAY ATTENTION! THIS is IMPORTANT.] 

The difference is the LOVE of GOD. Sacrifice without the LOVE of GOD is suffering; suffering WITH the LOVE of GOD, IS SACRIFICE.

“If I speak in the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all that I have, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.” (1Cor 13:1-3)

The Trappist monk who gets out of bed at two o’clock in the morning to pray for sins of the world is undergoing the same discomfort as the milkman, or baker or the victim of insomnia who gets up to take a stiff drink; but what a difference in the attitude of the soul!

“Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the Word of Life…” (Phil 2:14-16a)

It may very well be then that modern souls are suffering enough – probably too much; but it is all wasted, either because they do not turn it into merit by knowing God or because they complain with defiance and rebellious protests:

“Why should God do this to me?”

What we have to do is to drive a wedge between their actual pain and their potential sacrifice, by bringing to them some understanding of the Love on Calvary Who suffered the first and everything, THAT MAN MIGHT NEVER SAY:

“He does not know what it is to suffer.”

Here we are, presumed followers of Our Lord and His Mystical Body, the Church, and those who are looking for it, without knowing it.

We are like crude blocks of marble. Over there is our Exemplar Christ, Who models the Christian life which lives only by dying to evil.

We are our own sculptors. With our eyes often on Him, we take the chisel of our will, and cut off in mortification huge hunks of selfishness, envy, jealousy, hate, until finally the image of Our Lord soon begins to reveal itself.

All is well. I take you into My Soul and you are caught up on the Fires of My Sacred Heart. When I return you to your own soul, you are MORE Me than you. So it will be because I have willed it~Jesus to “Anne”, Lay Apostle, Directions for Our Times, Volume 8, p27.

Can Love be terrible, my Lord? Can gentleness be stern? “Ah, yes! – intense is LOVE’s desire to PURIFY His Beloved – tis FIRE, a HOLY FIRE to burn. For He must fully perfect thee till in thy likeness all may see the beauty of the Lord”…

“I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and would that it were already kindled! I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how I am constrained until it is accomplished!” ~Jesus of Nazareth, (Lk 12:49)

Can Love seem cruel, O my Lord? “Yes, like a sword the cure; He will not spare thee, sin-sick soul, till He hath made thy sickness whole, until thine heart is PURE!” ~ The Shepherd to Grace and Glory, Mountain of Spices, pg 142, emphasis added.

It is not as hard to do this as we think; it is harder to go on living the way we are, unsurrendered, unlovable, unhappy on the inside.

But you say you cannot do this alone – your will is weak; your mind is dark!

How right you are!

We need God’s Grace – God love you!

[And that is the topic of the next chapter of his broadcast and the book I have. However, I only promised this chapter. We will begin the Lenten retreat/reflections starting on Sunday. But Sheen’s words will always be here for you to refer back to when you need encouragement and/or that gentle reminder. But I will leave you with one more tool, a prayer.] 

A Prayer for Abandonment by Charles de Foucauld, (emphasis added)

Father, I abandon myself into Your hands; do with me what You will. Whatever You may do, I thank You: I am ready for all, I accept all. Let only Your Will be done in me, and in all Your creatures. I wish no more than this, O Lord.

Into Your hands I commend my soul; I offer it to You with all the Love of my heart, for I love You, Lord, and so need to give myself to surrender myself into your hands, without reserve, and with boundless confidence, for You ARE my Father.

Need something more? Visit Mark’s page on the 9 Day Novena of Abandonment

It’s powerful! Maybe print out a copy for yourself and for your loved ones?

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A Profound Reflection

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on August 11, 2009

On this past Sunday, I trimmed back a large plant or small tree (depending on your point of view) that was left in my care.  It seemed that no matter how much water I gave it, the plant always seemed to be dry.  The plant itself looked a bit withered with leaves looking limp and many leaves turning and falling off by the dozen.  It was these symptoms that drew my attention to the plant.

I looked inside and saw MANY branches no longer doing their part.  They had no leaves on them and they seemed to choke-out those that did have leaves.  Then I got to thinkin’…Is it possible that they are responsible for the water drain?

Plants are almost as complex as we humans.  They need water the same as we do but they have something different about parts of the plant that no longer bear any fruit, or in this case, any leaves.  That is, water will continue to be directed to all parts of the plant whether or not they contain leaves or not.  Good water will be sent to dead limbs at the expense of the rest of the plant that have healthy limbs.  This is partly why it is necessary to trim branches from bushes and small trees, to prevent the plant from dehydrating itself.  I immediately set to work to cut free those dead and useless branches that were no longer bearing fruit that is leaves.

As I worked away, a very profound thought came to me with regards to Christ’s Church, the Catholic Church.  Before Jesus began His public ministry, His forerunner and cousin, John the Baptist, was spending his days down at the banks of the Jordon river proclaiming repentance for the kingdom of God was soon to come.  It was during one of these preaching sessions that the current religious leaders (Pharisees and Sadducees – and if you do not think they exist in today’s Church, think again!) came to John trying to ascertain who he was.  Upon seeing them, John cried out in a loud voice,

“You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit that befits repentance, and do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham.  Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” ~Mt 3: 7b-10

Jesus Himself even warns of this later in Matthew as He speaks on False Prophets, their works and the fruit that they bear,

So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. 18 A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Thus you will know them by their fruits. ~Mt 7:17-20

As I continued to cut away I noticed three things.  One, the plant had a white sap that would ooze out of the area where the branch had just been removed and begin the healing process of that area.  Secondly, I noticed that the plant began to take on a lightness such as one that gave the good leaves and branches an excuse to breath well and straighten up. Thirdly, the excess water that was being stored (?) in those branches was immediately released and promptly returned to the reservoir at the bottom of the large pot.  No foolin’! All of the sudden water was gushing forth from the plant providing a stabling supply that would last the bush for a good week if not longer…

When I began to trim again I noticed that the higher I went the more often the dead branches tried to hide themselves among good branches to make it look as if they were also bearing fruit (growing leaves).  I felt a great satisfaction in recognizing them as well as a great indignation towards those selfish and destructive branches that tried to hide…they were cut out with great vigor!

I then began to think on the upcoming persecution, the trimming of the vine, which is the clearing of the branches that no longer bare good fruit that exist within Christ’s Church.  Jesus said,

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. If a man does not abide in Me, he is cast forth as a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire and burned. ~Jn 15: 5-6

How will it be determined those who will be cut away from the vine?  Jesus continues,

If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.  By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love.

If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.  These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. ~ Jn 15:5-11

Jesus gave this very stern warning when He told His disciples that not everyone who cries out, ‘Lord, Lord’ will be saved (cf. Mt 7:21).  There are many who have claimed the name Catholic but have proven by their fruits to be nothing more than a forerunner of the one who is coming and may very well already be here, the Son of Perdition, the Lawless One, who cares nothing for God or for man (cf 2Thes 2: 3-4).

Those who promote Choice as if it were above the Sanctity of Life itself and those who promote immoral unions of women with women and men with men, and those who make woman into man with the false sense of power, a power reserved only for God.  Of these Paul warns,

The coming of the lawless one by the activity of Satan will be with all power and with pretended signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are to perish, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.  Therefore God sends upon them a strong delusion, to make them believe what is false, so that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. ~ 2Thes 2: 9-12

And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a base mind and to improper conduct. They were filled with all manner of wickedness, evil, covetousness, malice. Full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity, they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God’s decree that those who do such things deserve to die, they not only do them but approve those who practice them. ~ Romans 1:28

Jesus Himself states,

For false Christs and false prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. ~Mt 24:24

The time is fast approaching when the lines will be clearly drawn and all those who turn from God will have made an eternal decision that may very well be irreversible.  That is why NOW is the time to REPENT and TURN AWAY from EVIL and RETURN to a LOVING and MERCIFUL God who will RECEIVE you with OPEN ARMS (cf. Lk 15:20).

BUT, if YOU CHOOSE to WAIT until that day of DECISION, then MERCY may very well be closed to you and JUDGMENT be YOUR COURSE, YOUR CHOICE.

March 25, 1936: Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, said to St. Faustina, “Oh how pleasing to God is the soul that follows faithfully the inspiration of His grace!  I gave the Savior to the world; as for you, you have to speak to the world about His great mercy and prepare the world for the Second Coming of Him who will come, not as a merciful Savior, but as a Just Judge. Oh how terrible is that day!  Determined is the day of justice, the day of divine wrath.  The angels tremble before it. Speak to souls about this great mercy while it is still time for [granting] mercy… Fear nothing.  Be faithful to the end…” Diary of St Faustina§635

Recommended Reading:

Sin and Redemption
Reconciliation

Weeds Among Wheat
Great Purification

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