It is said that once
the Spanish mystic St. John of the Cross
was so much enthused
in front of a beautiful statue of the Child Jesus
that he started dancing whilst singing:
if your love can kill,
kill me now!!”
God is stunning.
Gorgeous, perhaps, is a better word.
When He visits me,
He always knows what to do.
Sometimes He consoles me.
He enters into the chasm of my depression
and there He speaks to my heart.
He has a way also how to rebuke me.
There were times when He just smiled at me solicitously
when He found me doing something stupid.
There were times when He just stood by me without saying anything
because, I suppose, He saw my aching heart.
One thing I know for sure.
He is the only one who never accused me,
never slighted me
never told me ‘what an embarrassment,
you should be ashamed of yourself’.
He never pointed his finger at me and condemned me.
Even when he had every good reason to do it.
Even when, like the woman taken in adultery,
I was caught red-handed and was brought before him.
He continued loving me when I was selfish
a filthy sinner.
He is the only one who taught me to believe in the stars
even when everything around me was pitch dark.
There was a woman who for twelve years
had suffered from a flow of blood.
She was losing blood and life with it.
She broke the law of Leviticus 15
when she drew near and touched the Master.
And He did not condemn her
but healed her… whilst she was breaking the law!
This is my God!
And if today I am still a Christian
it is because He met me.
He never expected anything from me – as people do.
He never tried to trample me underfoot – as people do.
He never doubted me – as people do.
But he always told me: “Courage, Pius!
Don’t lose hope!
Don’t be afraid!
I love you – what else do you need?
I respect you – what else do you desire?
I understand you – why do you set off seeking others to understand you?
I love you as a bridegroom loves his unfaithful bride
as a shepherd loves his lost sheep.
Let me smother you with my love’s kisses.
Let me make you drunk with the most delicious cellar wine.
Let me fill you to overflowing with delicacies.”
This is what God always tells me.
“I sleep, but my heart is awake.
I hear my love knocking:
‘Open to me, my sister, my beloved,
my dove, my perfect one!
For my head is wet with dew,
my hair with the drops of night.’
My love thrust his hand
through the hole in the door;
I trembled to the core of my being.
Then I got up to open to my love,
myrrh ran off my hands,
pure myrrh off my fingers,
on to the handle of the bolt.
I opened to my love,
but he had turned and gone!
My soul failed at his flight.
I charge you daughters of Jerusalem,
what are you to tell him? –That I am sick with love…”
(Song of Songs 5, 2. 4-6. 8)
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission is hereby granted for any non-commercial use, provided that the content is unaltered from its original state, if this copyright notice is included.