Christ Grieving by Michael D. O'Brien
Christ embraces the whole world, yet hearts have grown cold, faith is eroded, violence increases. The cosmos reels, the earth is in darkness. The farmlands, the wilderness, and the cities of man no longer reverence the Blood of the Lamb. Jesus grieves over the world. How will mankind awake? What will it take to shatter our indifference? —Artist's Commentary
HE is burning with love for you like a groom separated from his bride, longing to embrace her. He is like a mother bear, fiercely protective, running toward her cubs. He is like a king, mounting his steed and rushing his armies into the countryside to protect even the lowliest of his subjects.
Jesus is a jealous God!
A JEALOUS GOD
By now, you may have heard that Oprah Winfrey said the reason she began to question her Christian faith is because she heard the words that "God is a jealous God" (Exodus 34:14). How could God be jealous of me, she asked.
Dear Oprah, don't you understand? God is burning with a great love for us! He wants ALL of our love, not a divided love. He wants all of our gaze, not a distracted glance. Rejoice at these words! God loves you so much, He wants all of you. He wants you to dance like a flame in the furnace of His heart… fire mingling with Fire, love uniting with eternal Love.
Yes, dear Oprah! God is jealous for you, and even more so, now that you have sought Him elsewhere.
But so has a vast portion of the Church. Instead of running to its Lover, it has crawled into bed with the god of materialism. Rather than fixing her eyes upon Christ, she has become hypnotized by the spirit of the world. We are scourging Christ all over again! While our sins fill the cup of justice to overflowing, it is a jealous love which is consuming our God!
The flames of mercy are burning Me—clamoring to be spent; I want to pour them out upon these souls. —Diary of St. Faustina, n. 50
A GREAT SHAKING!
On our ministry tour here in the United States, miracles are happening at the Encounter With Jesus we are presenting. I wrote a couple of weeks ago about a woman who saw Jesus as well as rays of light emanating from the Eucharist. Another woman experienced physical healing. Another who has been unable to kneel for two years, was able to kneel during Adoration. One priest experienced intense heat radiating from the monstrance. Dozens of others, including many who faithfully adore Christ in the Eucharist, have said they have never experienced Jesus' presence so intensely. Others are unable to put into words what they have experienced… their tears speaking for them instead.
A few evenings ago, an eight year old girl was bowed with her face to the ground and seemed stuck in that posture. When asked afterwards what happend, she said, "Because there were thousands of buckets of love being poured over me. I couldn't move!"
God is ready to pour out an Ocean of Mercy upon us! Yet, at most of the churches we have gone to, only a very small percentage of the congregation have attended, leaving the majority of pews empty. At our school events, there is a dullness of heart and unbelief among the older students that is heart-breaking. Several times, I have cried out: "These are a stiff-necked people!"
And the words came to me:
There is coming a Great Shaking!
Yes! It is coming, and it is coming quickly! This people needs to be shaken because many do not even realize they are asleep! Their ignorance is in some ways a saving grace: it has reduced their culpability. Yet, it is also numbing souls, dulling their consciences, which can lead them to greater and greater bringing sorrow upon sorrow, and further separation from God.
The sin of the century is the loss of the sense of sin. —POPE PIUS XII, Radio Address to the United States Catechetical Congress held in Boston [26 Oct., 1946: AAS Discorsi e Radiomessaggi, VIII (1946), 288]
There is a Great Shaking coming to awaken again our sense of sin, but by far more, to awaken an awareness of the existence and presence and love of God! It is a coming of Him who loved us even unto death!
Before I come as the just Judge, I am coming first as the King of Mercy. —Diary of St. Faustina, n. 83
I believe we are on the verge of one of the greatest moments of evangelization since Pentecost, even if it is brief. Our sins demand Justice… but the jealousy of God insists upon Mercy.
How will mankind awake? What will it take to shatter our indifference? —Artist's Commentary from above painting
Is it not love which awakens the human heart? Is it not love which melts our apathy? Is it not love that we are longing for? And what greater love is there than One who has laid down His life for another?
Before the day of justice arrives, there will be given to people a sign in the heavens of this sort: All light in the heavens will be extinguished, and there will be great darkness over the whole earth. Then the sign of the cross will be seen in the sky, and from the openings where the hands and the feet of the Savior were nailed will come forth great lights which will light up the earth for a period of time. This will take place shortly before the last day. —Diary of St. Faustina, n. 83
Yes… we will be awakened by Love. A jealous love.
The consciences of this beloved people must be violently shaken so that they may "put their house in order"… A great moment is approaching, a great day of light… it is the hour of decision for mankind. —Ibid, P. 37 (Volumne 15-n.2, Featured Article from www.sign.org)