If something is presented to the senses, which is not solely for the honor and glory of God, give it up, and deprive yourself of it, for the love of Jesus Christ, who, while on earth, had and desired nothing but to do the will of his Father.” -St. John of the Cross
We have wildflowers that grow on our campus. They adorn the patch of land beside the Medical Office building, here at Santa Teresita. And they have become a beautiful display of color and life for every visitor who stops to admire them. You would never imagine that the bare strip of evening land with its hundreds of fruitless stems could transform into newness of life every morning as the buds begin to open and announce the dawning of a new day.
I made the mistake of plucking one of these beautiful flowers to transplant it into a mini vase. I brought it home to place it next to a statue we have of the Child Jesus. It is worth keeping on display, or so I thought. What I did not know is that this type of flower cannot sustain its blossom if it is not directly exposed to the sunlight! without sun, this beautiful flower closes entirely. And sure enough, within minutes of being transplanted, the flower said goodnight and went to rest inside itself.
It is evident that we are drawn to all things beautiful. And that is not a bad thing in itself. God created all that exists and because of that all things should have the capacity to direct us toward beauty and goodness.
But when our motto becomes “I see, I desire, I possess.” The purity of Gods design becomes stained with the disposition of our heart. We can love what we see, and desire what we love but as soon as we grasp to possess, the love we had is no longer free, it becomes enslaved to our desires and inordinate attachments.
The freedom to love comes from God’s desire to see our joy fulfilled. But our tendency to possess is rooted in a fear of loosing that which makes us happy. Similarly, we can at times fear love because we believe it to be transient, only passing.
Do we live every encounter, every moment with a heart totally secure in our union with Christ?
Relationships and friendships that allow your desire for love or happiness to be met are healthy and we are right in accepting the joy that comes from them. . . But what if we entered into every encounter without first being anchored in the truth of Christ’s love for us? Without a pure disposition our receptivity becomes a destructive engagement of selfish desires.
No wonder we feel a constant restlessness, our human desires will always beckon for more, and they continually reach out to grasp all potential fillers. They beckon with a flooding thirst and we have yet to find a quenching flood in this world. In our weakness we cling to trickling streams of pleasure. We fear the loss of a trickling delight because gaining the flood seems out of reach.
We were not created for this world, thus our soul will always demand for more, for perfect joy, perfect love, perfect bliss. And to our disappointment the more we seek, and grasp for what we see and desire, the more we mistakenly settle for less than our soul was created to receive.
Patience rewards, and Jesus Christ invites us to enter into that which we so desire. All we have to do is enter into a life with Him.
Allow Jesus to love you. Allow Him to desire you. Allow him to hold you. Allow him to enter into every single one of your longings of the heart. Only after this encounter with the maker of all things, will you be able to encounter all things beautiful and good with a love freely given, non-possessing, and pure. Beauty, Truth, Goodness, are truly secure in Christ, who sustains all things. We simply have to let go of the trickling stream and with a leap of faith grasp the running floods of his quenching love.