In Matthew 7:21, we read: “He that doth the will of My Father who is in Heaven, he shall enter into the Kingdom of God!”
My dear friends, let us be very, very clear: the aforementioned quote is not just words or lip service – it is God's demand for ACTION! Remember that the Lord said: “not everyone who says Lord, Lord, will enter into the Kingdom of God, but he that doth the will of My Father ...”
There is no doubt that everyone's path is different, but God alone is the One who traces out the path for each one of us in His divine will. Since everything is grace and for our ultimate good, we must not only accept His will for us, but we must respond. Jesus goes even further in saying that those who live in the will of His Father are His sisters and brothers and mothers ... The very moment a fervent Christian realizes God's will, they should, out of pure love for their Creator and Redeemer, desire it with all their heart, soul, mind and body. It should not make one iota of difference if what He is asking is easy or hard, sweet or bitter. A soul living in His will desires its fulfillment with a deep, all-encompassing love and will use all its strength to fulfill such an inkling. In order to achieve such a connection with the divine, there must be total peace and harmony. We must be one with Him who loves us beyond all human comprehension. There must be such a union that we literally become the very breath of God. We must become God's divine will in action here on earth!
How easy it is to pledge our service to the Lord. We might promise to become an Adorer of the Blessed Sacrament on a regular basis, or attend daily Mass or come together for weekly prayer groups or Cenacles – we may even do all of those things. But what we must look at is this: Are there any fruits of our actions? Are these devotions changing our behaviour? Are we becoming more loving? Do we exhibit more compassion? Are we filled with the peace of Christ even in difficult situations? Do we refrain from judging? Have we stopped getting involved in gossip – even “holy” gossip? Do we pray instead of getting involved in idle conversations? Have we stopped saying that we don't have time to pray but spend excessive time talking on the phone, watching movies or "surfing" the internet? Do we pray for our parents, living or deceased? Have we stopped telling half-truths or withholding information to save ourselves from humiliation?
Living with the purpose to become sanctified, my dear friends, should be our goal. We must aim to eradicate all behaviours that are contrary to the Law of God. The fruits of our faith – of our very lives – should not only be visible but should be tasted by all those around us. Often times, we ourselves are our own stumbling blocks toward the attainment of our goal. We are guided by our own ideas, taking pleasure in receiving praise or recognition. We are often guided by our own agendas or tastes, without regard for the opinions or feelings of others. We act without thinking of the possible consequences of our actions. Therefore, we need the light of Christ to help us to recognize our own shortcomings. Once we recognize them, we need to confess them and finally, we must learn to draw away from them so that we can draw ever closer to the goal of achieving sanctity.
“If you love Me...” Jesus said. Yes, if you love Him, you will be able to put your words into action without fear! “If you love me, walk on water, serve your neighbour, fulfill the Beatitudes.”
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land.
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure of heart, for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.
Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you falsely because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in Heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The fulfillment of these Beatitudes with a joyful heart rests entirely on the perfect conformity of our own will with the omnipotent and divine will of God. Of course, God's divine will is manifested in the keeping of His Commandments and in the precepts of the Church, but it is also important to act in accordance with His will in our individual duties! In order to be in conformity with His divine will, one must recognize the duties of one's own state in life and be faithful to them. As a lay person, you are not asked to be obedient to the rule of a religious order. A single person has different duties than a married person. A mathematician is called to perfection in his or her calculations, whereas a priest's primary concern should be the care of the sheep in his flock.
In order to live God's will perfectly in my state of life, I am not asked to do extraordinary things, or to go on earth-shattering excursions or to seek miraculous pilgrimage sites for my own gain. No, I am asked to do all things – especially the small, seemingly ordinary things – to the very best of my ability! Sincere Christians must diligently fulfill their calling, seeing God's plan and action in every one of their duties. We must persevere in punctual and diligent behaviour throughout our lives. We should walk with great fervor in His light, striving always to fulfill His divine will. We should never allow ourselves to tire of doing good or to fall into aridity, nor become careless or negligent. With great, almost heroic fervor and untiring fidelity, we should accomplish our duties, full of confidence like a brave knight. We should go forward, knowing that ALL IS GRACE!
He who called us into our state of life, into our vocation, is the One who will also support us on our journey. We cannot allow ourselves to become discouraged by our failures; instead, we must pick ourselves up and begin anew. We just have to stretch out our hands when we feel that we are sinking and cry: “Lord, save me.” Eventually, by means of His grace and strengthened by His love, we will learn to walk on the water of faith. Then, even if storms are raging around us, we will be safe and unafraid, for He who
is Mercy Incarnate, is also Captain of our ship! If we should realize, towards the end of our days, that our efforts were poorly executed, then we must also trust that God, in His great mercy, will reward our efforts even if they were not successful!
In entry 1229 of Saint Faustina's Diary, we read:
“Fire and ice cannot be joined;
Either the fire dies, or the ice melts.
But by Your mercy, O God,
You can make up for all that is lacking.”
In this tenth anniversary year of Saint Faustina's canonization, it is fitting that we take a look at a few more of her writings concerning her Bridegroom's divine will:
Entry 1003: “O Divine Will, You are my nourishment, You are my delight.”
Entry 1004: “Your holy will is my repose;
In it is contained all my sanctity,
And my eternal salvation,
For doing God's will is the greatest glory.
The will of God – those are His various wishes
Which my soul carries out without reserve,
Because such are His divine desires,
In those moments when God shares His confidence with me.
Do with me as You will, Lord.
I place no obstacles, I make no reservations.
For You are my whole delight and the love of my soul,
And to You, in turn, I pour out the confidences of my heart.”
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Entry 1208: “May You be blessed, O God, for everything You send me.
Nothing under the sun happens without Your will. I cannot
penetrate Your secrets with regard to myself, but I press
my lips to the chalice You offer me.”
Entry 1394: “...This light has confirmed me in profound peace, making me
understand that I should fear nothing except sin. Whatever God
sends me, I accept with complete submission to His holy will.
Wherever He puts me, I will try faithfully to do His holy will,
as well as He wishes, to the extent of my power to do so, even
if the will of God were to be as hard and difficult for me as was
the will of the Heavenly Father for His Son, as He prayed in
the Garden of Olives.”
Entry 1409: “...He is bringing me to understand deeply how everything
depends on His will and how He allows certain difficulties
precisely for our merit, so that our fidelity might be clearly
manifest. And through this, I have been given strength for
suffering and self-denial.
A PRAYER FOR THE GRACE TO DO GOD'S WILL
(an excerpt from Diary entry 1265)
O Jesus, stretched out upon the cross, I implore You, give me the grace of doing faithfully the most holy will of Your Father, in all things, always and everywhere. And when this will of God will seem to me very harsh and difficult to fulfill, it is then I beg You, Jesus, may power and strength flow upon me from Your wounds, and may my lips keep repeating,
“Your will be done, O Lord.”