Posted by: mmreflections | December 12, 2011

Some Closing Thoughts December 2011

Praise our God, all you his servants, you who revere him, small and great.  The Lord has established his reign.  Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory.  The wedding day of the Lamb has come, his bride has made herself ready.  She was allowed to wear a bright, clean linen garment.  The linen represents the righteous deeds of the holy ones.  Blessed are those who have been called to the wedding feast of the Lamb. (Revelation 19:5-9)

After posting a reflection or lesson each month for the past four years, it seems timely and appropriate for me to turn my attention to other challenges awaiting me in these golden years.  These writings or musings were in response to the many requests from family and friends who pressed me to pass on stories from my life’s journey as well as some of the lessons learned along the way.  How does one gracefully bring to a close a wedding feast or celebration of any kind?  This is how I feel after hearing from so many readers who were able to relate the struggles and challenges in their own lives to my own.  Hearing from you of the many blessings received in the midst of incredible challenges and sorrows in your lives proved to be a cornucopia of blessings for me, much like a great wedding feast.  A prayer of praise to our God, the Holy One, the Incomprehensible One, the Eternally Present One seemed to be the most fitting way to conclude and summarize these reflections.

Abba, Father, praise you and thank you for creating us out of nothing, for  bringing us into this life.  Praise you for the ongoing healing we have experienced daily on our journeys.  Praise you and thank you for loving us, for being with us every step of the  way, for the peace and joy of your presence.  Praise you and thank you for calling us forth into this life before we were conceived in our mother’s womb.  Praise you and thank you for intending us to be manifestations of your presence in the world today.  Thank you for the abundance we enjoy and for the wisdom with which you guide us.

Jesus, thank you for making our Abba’s perfect unconditional love known to us, for showing us the Way, Truth, and Life we are called to live.  Thank you, Jesus, for inviting us to follow your Way, to see the world through your eyes with loving concern, for helping us to take this world as it is not as we would have it, for trusting you will make all things right if we surrender to you.

Praise you and thank you, Holy Spirit, for surrounding us with your gentle, healing, protective pure light; for empowering us to live the life to which we have been called; for helping us to be gratefully mindful of our oneness with you, each other and all of your beautiful creation.

Abba, Father, you are our life and our hope; Jesus you are our brother, friend, companion, light and refuge.  Holy Spirit, you are our protector, guide, healer and love.  Praise you for the gift of Faith.  We believe you love us.  We believe we are your children, each unique aspects of your creation.  We believe we are loved, we believe we are forgiven.  We believe it is in you we live, move and have our being.  We believe you are kind and benevolent. We believe we are a part of a great masterpiece you are creating, using every aspect of our being, all the shadows, mistakes, failures, talents, gifts, even our sins.  We believe you have given us all we need to be the sons and daughters you have created us to be.  We believe you have given us all the gifts we need to manifest your kindness, goodness, beauty, love, compassion and mercy to all the brothers and sisters we meet on our journeys.  We believe you have given us all the courage, strength and wisdom to be and to do what you would have us be and do each day.

Abba, Father, thank you for the gift of life, the one life we all share.  Thank you for the gift of breath; every breath we take is a sharing in your Divine Breath, every breath we receive is a gift from you reminding us of your great love.  Thank you for the gift of death, the mysterious rest awaiting us at our journey’s end, the mysterious passing  from the visible to the invisible, the mysterious prelude into the resurrection to new life.   Thank you for helping us to embrace the gift of life, for filling us with a desire for life, a longing to let your live fully in us.  We intend to let your  life live fully and abundantly in us for service to you and our brothers and sisters that your joy may be in us and our joy may be full.  Thank you for helping us to realize that in and with you we can do all that you intend for us to do, but apart from you we can do nothing.  Apart from you we are powerless over life situations, over addictions, over our resistance to what is happening around us and our inordinate desires.

Holy One, have mercy on us.  We are sorry for all the ways we have given into our addictions, for our resistance to your will, for our inordinate desires.  We are sorry for all the ways we have failed to live as the sons and daughters you intended for us to be.  We are sorry for all  the ways we miss the mark in our thoughts, words, and actions.  We are sorry for all the good we have left undone, for all the wounds we have consciously or unconsciously inflicted upon others and ourselves, for all we have done that was not in the best interests of your kingdom, in the best interests of others or ourselves.  We admit that apart from you our lives are unmanageable.  That which we should do, we fail to do; that which we should  not do, we do.

You are the Savior.  Only you can save us.  Only you can restore sanity to our lives, to living in the present moment in your divine presence. Only you can restore meaning and purpose to our lives.  Only you can help us to be and to do what you would have us be and do.  Only you can heal our afflictions, the painful memories of the past, the wounds we caused others, the wounds we received.  Only you can remove our short-comings, our defects of character.  Only you can unload the excessive emotional, spiritual, religious, financial and other baggage we carry.  Only you can expose and shatter the false images we have of you, as well as the idols we have set up on our journeys.  Only you can free us from the prison and chains of the dead past and the imagined future.  Only you can reconcile the contradictions in our lives, saint/sinner, good/bad, pure/impure, light/darkness, doubt/hope, fear/faith.  Only you can make your incomprehensible and perfect love known to us in the deepest recesses of our hearts.

We surrender to you as best we can in this moment: mind, heart, will, body, soul, spirit; every aspect of our personality, character; our gifts and talents, successes and failures, hopes and dreams.  We belong to you, Holy One!  Make us instruments of your peace!”

 And this is my prayer: that your love may increase  more and more in knowledge and every kind of perception, to discern what is of value, so that you may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God.   (Philippians 1:9-11)

                  

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Responses

  1. Such a wonderful prayer, Fr. Mike. So beautifully written and so fitting as you close out this one chapter in your life’s journey. Thank you SO much for sharing your knowledge, love and wisdom of Our Lord! Many blessings to you at this Holiest of Seasons!

  2. Dear Father Michael,
    Thank you for sharing your reflections and lessons with us. We have learned a great deal from you. God bless you for all that you do.
    Michael


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