Tuesday, May 14, 2013
This Sweetest Water
Such richness is always consistent with Scripture and the teaching of the Church. Is it important that there be this kind of complimenting? Absolutely. Just as we would not toss marshmallows into beef stew, we don't ladle conflicting teachings onto our storehouse of treasured scriptures. Such mixtures could result in everything from an unpleasant taste to (depending on the added ingredient) something harmful to our physical or spiritual health.
Looking back over my mix of holy influences is turning out to be a marvelous exercise - sort of like tracing my spiritual family tree.
Taking stock of some of the saints whose writings first formed me, I find (very close to the 'base') St. Teresa of Avila. When I discovered her Spiritual Autobiography and Soliloquies in the 1980s, I felt I had found a friend for life.
'O Lord my God,' wrote this wise, mystical, practical Doctor of the Church, 'how You possess the words of eternal life, where all mortals will find what they desire if they want to seek it! But what a strange thing, my God, that we forget Your words in the madness and sickness our evil deeds cause! O my God, God, God, author of all creation!... bring it about... that my thoughts not withdraw from Your words.' (Soliloquies)
'Lazarus did not ask You to raise him up. You did it for a woman sinner; behold one here, my God and a much greater one; let Your mercy shine. I although miserable, ask life for those who do not want to ask it of You.' (Soliloquies)
'O Life, Who gives life to all! Do not deny me this sweetest water that You promise to all who want it. I want it, Lord, and I beg for it, and I come to You. Don't hide Yourself, Lord, from me, since You know my need and that this water is the true medicine for a soul wounded with love for You.' (Soliloquies)