Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday, December 16, 2011

Today’s text

From a treatise Against Heresies by Saint Irenaeus (bishop, second century C.E.)

The Spirit prepares man to receive the Son of God, the Son leads him to the Father, and the Father freeing him from change and decay, bestows the eternal life that comes to everyone from seeing God. As those who see light are in the light sharing its brilliance, so those who see God are in God sharing his glory, and that glory gives them life. To see God is to share in his life.


Seeing is all I want on most days. I want to see God. I want to be moved by the presence of the Holy One. This vision transports me beyond daily anxieties to a different space, a transformed consciousness in which fear cannot exist and daily anxieties cannot be found.

For the duration of this blessed vision of the Blessed, nothing else matters. Life’s purpose is clear, and the heart is at rest because it has arrived home. We see the loveliness we seek, the beauty from which we came. We experience the wonder toward which we move, until the day we fall asleep in the arms of the Blessed Mystery you are, my Lord.

Thank for you this vision, this awareness.

Through these tears, I move back through my week and see again where I have seen you. Sometimes I have seen with physical vision only because my spiritual eyes were blinded by anxious preoccupation with daily concerns.

I saw you on Wednesday, at a funeral. I stood and spoke, remembering a holy moment between me and a dying man.

He spoke his need for faith and hope, and I knew what to say. “Remember. Remember all the grace and beauty you have seen and known in your days, all the love you have given and received.”

Small pictures, I said; each one is a snapshot of the great love with which you are loved, a love stronger than death. Every graced moment is the Spirit leading us to the Son who is God’s eternal Word, spoken in time. Each one is a gift of eternal life right here and now, for those with eyes to see, each a share in God’s glory

Look and see, I said. And if I had held a mirror to my face, I would have seen the face of my brother, Jesus, calling him to the Father, for I had become the face of the Eternal Glory. I had seen light, and for a blessed moment shined with its brilliance.

There is no pride in this, only humility and the joy of being a small part of a great and holy purpose, a tiny flame in the immensity of God’s heart.

Thursday I saw you, again, My Lord, in an old woman’s wrinkled face. She had just turned 90, though she looks younger. There were many hard days in my life, she said to friends. But looking back, she continued, I know how good my life has been, what a wonderful life I have had.

There was no regret in her words or her eyes, only gratitude. She had seen your light in her life, and now in the shadows of old age, she shared its brilliance, your brilliance.

She saw you, and in seeing she shared in the life you are. And so did I.

May it happen again today. This is my prayer.

Pr. David L. Miller

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Today’s text

From a discourse On the Contemplation of God by William of Saint Theirry (abbot, 1075/1080-1148)

We hold you dear by the affection you have implanted in us. You are the one supremely good and ultimate goodness. Your love is your goodness, the Holy Spirit proceeding from the Father and the Son! From the beginning of creation it was he who hovered over the waters--that is, over the wavering minds of men, offering himself to all, drawing all things to himself. By his inspiration and holy breath, by keeping us from harm and providing for our needs, he unites God to us and us to God.


Are you hovering near, Great Spirit? Do you inhabit this quiet space where I wait for words to come out of the nothingness and flow through my fingers?

If so, come with all the love that you are--the love that ever flows between Father and Son at the heart of the Holy Trinity. Come so that my wavering mind may be drawn to you and my still heart may flow with the warmth of your goodness.

In the beginning, you hovered over the watery chaos of what was to be creation, a universe billions of stars that burn in the cold dark of space. But this morning I cannot think of their multitude or the wonder of yawning light years of dark space.

For reasons I do not know, I think again and again of a small grove of birch trees along 75th Street. I see again the huge yellow moon hanging over the dark wooded ridge high behind them, a quarter mile or so. The moon glistened on pale patches of snow beneath the birches, reflecting gentle white light on the trucks, as I drove home.

Right then, I knew you. I don’t know how or why, unless it is that every beauty and wonder in this world has the tendency to awaken thoughts of you as Ultimate and Loving Source.

But sometimes such scenes awaken faith and sometimes they do not. It is not automatic. On this average ride home from the office, wonder happened in my heart and my mind leaped into awareness that love lies at the heart of this crazy world. The earth in its wonder leaps from the heart of an impenetrable Loving Mystery, who speaks in the glisten of snow in reflected moon light.

The Holy Spirit hovers over the wavering minds of men and women and calls them home. In that moment, as I drove home, you brought me home. For home is awareness of you as Love, a love which manifests in the sacrament of the world, in the reality of life, and my Christian faith says, in the face of my brother Jesus.

Pr. David L. Miller