Saturday, January 9, 2016

Catholic Hermit, Severe Suffering, Confession

The severe spinal headache continues, off and on and mostly on.

There are life factors involved; the temporal and tangible does affect our bodies, our health.  We must try to cope as best we can when there is tremendous suffering.  Medication does not always work well, and then what?

For such times, when it seems desperate times require desperate measures, when it seems we can no longer pray, we simple "be."

Take whatever pain medications we are blessed to be given, try to continue on with whatever way we might distract ourselves from the intractable pain, and also consider that other aspects affecting our emotions--wounds to the heart--also can contribute.

In that, we remember that Jesus can heal all wounds.  Ask Him to do so.  Ask for strength, for fortitude.  Try to maintain the outer even if the inner is in total chaos and seems near to hopelessness.

Yes, it is quite difficult to take in much rejection, to face disappointments with those who say or do without realizing the effect it has on others.  We can quietly work through these issues, doing our best to seek justice, but also there is the aspect that we ourselves have possibly said or done what has created others to react.  We may not even know exactly; or it could be that our very lives somehow become (or at some point in the past became) too much for others to be able to cope with.

Then, of course, if consecrated to God, if Jesus has consecrated our hearts, we must factor in that this means our lives are not going to be lived via a more typical course.  The wounds are going to come and be felt, and we must let go of the struggle to try to self-correct the course, to try to veer onto some "normal" path--akin to those paths in lives we see around us.

For a consecrated hermit, this is particularly true.  And for a soul whose heart has been wounded by, has been consecrated by Jesus Himself, years ago, the reality of that supernatural experience that had physical and temporal "signs" with it, is well to remember.  It is an experience that is best to be held and turned and viewed in its various facets.

The reality, then, becomes that of "What can you expect?"  Of course there will be tremendous suffering to the point that the heart seems on the verge of breaking.  The physical pain will also throb, and one can wonder at such pain in the head--and then recall another time, perhaps, in which the Lord emphasized to "Think with the heart!"  It helps to make sense of the reality that the head is in such suffering, that it cannot think that well; the heart must think for it.

The world sometimes can present such challenges and obstacles that are so very painful in all their emotional and mental details.  And others can make such hardships and even create obstacles or rules all the more painful when one begs for leniency on some rule or other.  This may be the case, such as in a business entity in the secular world, that it becomes a temptation to do whatever, to say whatever, to simply have justice in some temporal aspect.

One thinks of Jesus and the guys, walking through a field of wheat on the Sabbath.  Hungry, tired (and tired of extreme rules of what one cannot "do" on the Sabbath), they pluck some heads of grain to eat.  Yet they do not involve others in any deception.  They do not fight evil with evil.  It is not evil to eat.  Do we need to fast when the bridegroom is present to us?  He says not.

What does a consecrated hermit, authentically living the life as God's hermit, do when a sin has been committed?  Even in desperation, even if the outcome is just, even if some person in some position in the "world" has caused a wrong, even if in need and something is terribly wrong with a policy and an exception ought to be made for justice's sake, what if an untruth is part of the means to obtain justice in the outcome?

To whom does a hermit turn to confess a sin committed?  If authentically living as a consecrated hermit, a religious eremite, existing in the silence of solitude--to whom is confession and contrition for a sin made?

We make confession to Jesus, to the Bridegroom, here in our presence, here in our cell.  The Lord already knows.  He knows the obstructions, the unyielding and unjustifiable rule that someone in the world made even more severe out of a certain pleasure of power.  The Lord knows the injustice of it, and the desperation and all aspects of the wounded heart and crown-of-thorns head that help derange the mind enough to consider and yield to fighting an evil with another evil.

But, for a consecrated soul, for one whose heart has been consecrated by Christ to Christ, that way of fighting for justice does not settle well.  What has it come to, to do a wrong against a wrong to achieve justice?  Of course, it is a rather minor thing in actuality, and the world is filled with far worse.  Yet a soul consecrated by Jesus Himself, years ago, will go to the Lord in the quiet and solitude of its cell, and will confess and ask for mercy.  

The Lord will determine the judgment, minor as it may be in some ways yet major to a conscientious soul and definitely wrong in the ways of the world's rules of minds no matter how unjustifiable in the particulars of this situation.  The Lord hears and will decide.  The soul's heart will know the decision.  The Lord is kind and merciful, slow to anger and abiding in His love.

Confession for a consecrated hermit, authentically living his vows in silence and solitude, is a holy sacrament available in any present moment.  The confessional is the cell, and that "cell" also may be the consecrated heart which rules over the mind's will, given over in obedience to His Real Presence.  The high priest is Jesus Himself, and absolution and peace is His to bequeath, Sacred Heart to consecrated heart.

God bless His Real Presence in us!  Let us love one another for love is of God!

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