Hooray for rest day Fridays! School got cancelled again today because it is the North Pole on steroids outside. The wind is wielding its mighty axe of torture. Thank God I don’t have to be out in this! I even hit the auto-start on Jim’s car (he has every other Friday off, so was home today too) and drove over to church for my visit to Jesus.
I said my rosary before the Blessed Sacrament in the chapel area in the almost silent church. The wind was raging so loudly it shook the building. Then I walked into the main church, to the back wall which is relatively dark, for Stations.
There is no way to put into words the benefit this unworthy blob of human flesh gleans from praying this “action prayer”. I am always interested in seeing the new thing He will reveal to me in this journey of His Sacred Passion, and He’s still batting a thousand.
Sometimes when I approach the third, and seventh, and ninth stations- where Jesus fell, I focus on my God- thrown into the mud, and trampled underfoot. I focus on the Blessed Sacrament, and all the places where right now, He is desecrated and discarded and tossed to the ground.
The artist who crafted these stations did an incredible job. They are each clay creations, all off-white/tan in color, and there is a rough crudeness to the images, giving you the feel of the stark brutality, the damaged flesh. They are not smooth, and meticulous, and perfect. I love them, and they are hanging on the white brick wall that curves along the back, about seven feet up so I gaze up at them.
At the third station I walked forward, and looked up into the fallen Jesus, the crude clay makes it look like He is melded into the ground, beaten down, crushed down. I stand under, to place myself below my God Who chose to sink low for me. And once again I think on all the places where my God is cast off. I close my eyes and will it- that through the Immaculate heart of Mary I might adore my God Who is right now in the mud for me.
I mentally dig myself down deeper into the earth, the dust from where I came and thank Him, and offer amends to Him, and adore Him. My mind goes then to the First Communion celebration we attended some years back for my cousin’s daughter. In their church they had plush, individual seats and on the back of each chair was a sort of pocket to hold the song books.
My young daughter had reached into this pocket, as young children do, and she showed me what she had found there- broken pieces of a host. I told her to give them to me. It was the first time I had ever held a host in my hand. I took it to the priest, who honestly didn’t seem to be as upset about the horrible atrocity as I was. Could have read him wrong though.
And another time, I squirm at the thought as each time I call it to mind: while visiting my parent’s parish up north, we were sitting in the front row, I was right on the end, right where father was distributing communion and just by accident a piece of a host, when placed in a communicant’s hand broke off, and I only noticed because I was looking down as the feet went by. Not wanting to jump up and make some kind of scene I knelt there, and watched as people stepped on that piece of the Sacred Host. I did not move. I was frozen.
Then when everyone went through I got up and went down on the ground in front of the whole church to gather up all the broken remnants. Of course everyone noticed, and Father humbly received the pieces from me. I still cringe at that thought, how I sat there and saw Him crushed into the carpet, and did nothing. I sat there, not wanting to make a scene…
My God! My God! How You subject Yourself to complete and constant humiliation! For love You do this. How ignorant we are, we cannot see or understand the depth to which You allow Yourself to be crushed down, beaten down.
I closed my eyes again, stepped very close to the white brick wall and whispered into the crevices the words of the Divine Mercy: “For the sake of Your sorrowful passion, have mercy on us, and on the whole world.” My mind tried to go to anxious thoughts about how I’ve failed God in the past, how I will fail Him in the future, but God drew me back. And I thought, “Right now. Right here.” Irrelevant of all that is imperfect in me, I offer right now everything that is in me to offer- all filtered through the Immaculate heart. All my love, my thanksgiving, my amends, my adoration.
I whispered the words that should, because of their truth and need, be shouted and permeated into every crevice and heart on this earth! Only God could hear. But that was enough. “For the sake of Your sorrowful passion, have mercy on us, and on the whole world.”