Posted by: fvbcdm | November 12, 2012

Feast of Saint Josaphat (12 Nov 2012)

I once had a conversation with someone who was impressed by Our Lord’s words: the very hairs on your head are numbered, indicating how thoroughly God knows us.  We ourselves don’t know the number of hairs on our heads, but God does.  In that same vein, we read in the Book of Wisdom, chapter 1, that God is the witness of our inmost selves and the sure observer of our hearts and the listener to our tongues.  For the Spirit of the Lord fills the world, is all-embracing, and knows what man says.  We might add, also what man thinks and what man does.

It is beautiful to reflect upon the fact that God knows us inside out; expressed in philosophical terms, he knows us “subjectively.”  That means that he knows us as we know ourselves.  He knows exactly what it feels like to be me, to be you.  It can be difficult if not impossible to express to another person, regardless how close to us, exactly how we feel about something or what is going on in our minds, but God knows exactly what we are thinking, feeling, planning.  He knows our joys and sorrows, our delights and frustrations. 

I have often reflected on the fact that when the mother of a man on death row is interviewed, she will say of her criminal son, “Basically, he is a good man.”  She carried him in her womb; she gave him birth.  She nursed him at her breast, taught him his first words, his first steps, how to eat with a spoon.  She watched him grow up, and had the heartbreak to see him go astray.  But beneath all his sins and crimes, she knows the human goodness there, and continues to focus on that rather than on the abuse of his freedom and the gifts that God gave him. 

If that is true of ordinary human beings who doggedly love and forgive those whom they have parented, will not God be as understanding and merciful and loving toward us?  Did Jesus not die on the cross for us? Does he not say of you and me, “Basically he or she is a good person”?  This goodness of God is the basis of our hope, our return to the Lord after our sins to ask forgiveness and mercy.  One of the most beautiful and encouraging exchanges of dialogue in the gospel occurs when the thief on the cross beside that of Jesus, knowing that Jesus is accused of calling himself a king, says to Our Lord, “Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”  And Our Lord replies in a lavish assurance of divine generosity, “This day, you will be with me in Paradise!”  Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you.  Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This is a CDM composed by Father Brown in the past.


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