Monday, February 27, 2012

To The Least

Monday of the First Week of Lent

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, escorted by all the angels, then he will take his seat on his throne of glory. All the nations will be assembled before him and he will separate men one from another as the shepherd separates sheep from goats. He will place the sheep on his right hand and the goats on his left.
        ‘Then the King will say to those on his right hand, “Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take for your heritage the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you made me welcome; naked and you clothed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to see me.” Then the virtuous will say to him in reply, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you; or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and make you welcome; naked and clothe you; sick or in prison and go to see you?” And the King will answer, “I tell you solemnly, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to  me.”                                                                                                                                                                                  Matthew 25:3

“Even now, says the Lord,
   Return to me with your whole heart…”
                                                              Joel 2:12

This evening the moon light is hidden behind the clouds above the drizzle and slush and snow.  Late, on the edge of Liturgy and the Lenten season, the “Holy Spring” of the Catholic Church, I think about the sheep and the goats and the terrible division the Lord speaks.  How well have I tended to the least of these? How will I change?  How will I see Jesus in all those I meet?  At Mass yesterday, when my little daughter returned from Kids’ Word during the almsgiving, she missed her pew. She had gone all the way down the aisle before she realized and came back to find it.  How many times have we missed our pew in life?  Not being attentive to the here and now, to the possibilities to love presenting themselves quietly in the loudness of our lives; to God’s still voice beckoning us come into his friendship; His immense love and light bending jewel tones of grace.  How fitting to begin this Lenten journey in the dark of night where my soul clamors for the spectrum of Christ.  What I have tended to too little is solid reality, which is God, the source of all, the ground of being; 
Jesus in the least of us. 

My husband and I went to Mass at dusk while our girls played over the piano keys at their lessons.  We prayed and sang in the cool and dimly lit church full of iconic beauty; of God’s relentless pursuit of us throughout the ages and our turning away, and our surrendering.  Going interiorly towards the heat at the center, our voices going out like sparks of light into the chill air.  The Lord’s body and blood infusing our beings transparently as the royal hues of glass:  the rich notes rising everywhere above us like so many doves in flight; like tongues of fire.

I thought of the music my little daughters were playing, how I missed their being with us with my arms around them, while they still allow my arms around them, to make a cloister of hearts before the true Sacred Heart of Jesus.  How I long to be closer to Him.  How I long for solitude and the rigors thereof.  I prayed for others, for my wretchedness, for my obedience to align, for discipline of character to answer my Lord who keeps calling, has been calling.  The rain carring His voice as does the ice, barely perceptible but falling in multitudes.  The light always above the clouds of this world.  
May I never forget.

No comments:

Post a Comment