Tuesday, May 21, 2013
To be a Setting Sun
Thinking of what has formed me spiritually, I take one more look at the martyrs. These holy ones inspire me not because I like suffering (which I definitely do not), and not merely because their intense gift of self to Christ is challenging (although it is). I think I am enamored of them because their accounts pull me out of self-pity when I'm feeling arthritic, headachy, unable to find the car keys, or when it's raining for the ninth day in a row.
A witness of, say, an Ignatius of Antioch can hush my whines at such times. And fast.
"Now is the moment when I begin to be a disciple," proclaimed St. Ignatius as he was on the way to be fed to lions. "May nothing seen or unseen distract me from making my way to Jesus Christ. Fire and cross and battling with wild beasts, their clawing and tearing... let them assail me, so long as I get to Jesus Christ.... How glorious to be a setting sun - setting on the world, on my way to God!"
I hope to remember these words tomorrow, when I'm on the verge of grumbling about allergies and that load of laundry I must fold.
Painting: The Christian Martyrs Last Prayer