Those of us us who have given our lives fully to Him in the consecrated life, are called to continually foster an ever-deeper communion of life with our Beloved; — an intimacy that reaches ever-deeper into the core of who we are: in particular our deepest longings and desires; — an intimacy that invites Him into every part of us: our physical, sexual, emotional, mental make-up, as well as every stage of our lives from the moment of conception.
In order for us to be true witnesses to all of the espousal union with God to which we are all ultimately called, we must continually dispose ourselves more and more to this profound communion. We must allow the reality of the mystery of His Incarnation to penetrate deeply into our humanity, in order that we might become one. We must allow our Incarnate Lover to embrace every part of us.
Pope St. John Paul II says in his teachings on Theology of the Body, “Continence…has acquired the significance of an act of nuptial love, that is a nuptial love of the Redeemer…On the basis of the SAME DISPOSITION of the personal subject, and on the basis of the SAME NUPTIAL MEANING OF THE BODY, there can be formed the love that commits man to marriage for the whole duration of his life, BUT THERE CAN BE FORMED ALSO THE LOVE THAT COMMITS MAN TO A LIFE OF CONTINENCE FOR THE KINGDOM.”
He goes on to say, “[Continence for the Kingdom] comes about on the Basis of FULL CONSCIOUSNESS OF THAT NUPTIAL MEANING that masculinity and femininity contain in themselves. If this choice would come about by way of some ARTIFICIAL PRESCINDING from this real wealth of every human subject (meaning, repressing our sexuality), IT WOULD NOT APPROPRIATELY AND ADEQUATELY CORRESPOND TO CHRIST’S WORDS…” (Apr 26, ’82).
Not light words spoken by our Holy Father. They clearly express that we are called to live, as celibates, in the full reality of who we are meant to be as sexual beings, male and female. Of course we are called to sublimate the sexual energies used in the marital vocation, allowing our sexual desires to transcend from the natural to the supernatural level, in order to be empowered to grow in a deep and profound union with Christ our Bridegroom; and for priests en persona Christi with their Bride the Church,
beginning with Mary, Spotless Bride.
If the deep passion of our heart is dormant then John Paul II’s statement can never be lived out. It is only through the calling forth of our own entombed ” Lazarus,” a circumcision of our own hearts, that we can truly begin to connect with our Divine Lover heart-to-heart; that we can allow the most sensitive parts of us to be touched, loved and embraced by Him (Something that Mary did most perfectly).
And, it is only then, in the joy of such communion of hearts, that others can be drawn in as well, to the “Wedding Feast of the Lamb.”
SO IF ONE’S HEART is in need of awakening, what first must take place is an honesty with God about it; an honesty about who we are before Him, with no mincing of the truth.
What is the greatest longing and desire within us?… Are we even in touch with it, or are we medicating ourseves with a lukewarm/compromised Christian life?…
“I have come to set the earth on fire and oh how I wish it were already blazing!” Jesus laments.
He wants to ignite our hearts ever-more deeply, until the flames of His love so permeate us that there is no distinction between us… we are one (as Jesus and Mary’s Hearts were/are one).
But this can only happen if our hearts are brought to Him, surrendered to Him; and we are fully open and honest about everything, including our disordered longings and inclinations. It is in fact especially in being open about the things we least like about ourselves and of which we are most ashamed, that His fire can be invited in. It is in being real and honest about these deeper core areas within us that we can experience the truth of the words of our Lord, “I came that you might have life and have it to the full.”
by lilla marie lottinger