Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Nothing is Ever Enough

This human life: full of joy and adventure and promise; full of so many reasons to be grateful.

But nothing is ever enough.

All the promises and all of the beauty eventually fall short; they pass with time even as we endure, unfulfilled. They open our hearts, but if we try to hold on, we are left with only the wounds of dissatisfaction.

Sometimes life itself just seems to betray us, and our hopes are frustrated by external afflictions. Or we might have years of vigor to pursue a satisfying life, but eventually our spirits grow weary of the continual disappointment.

We might become tired, cynical, or bitter as we get older. Or we might shrink our hearts and cover our secret despair with the mask of resignation. Eventually, we realize that all we have to look forward to is death.

If it all seems unbearable, that's because it is unbearable.

The only hope we have is to call upon the Lord. We must really call upon Him, with faith. Too often when we approach prayer, what we're really looking for is an escape from our suffering. But harsh realities cannot be dismissed by "religious talk." Theology is not enough. Superficial pious sentiments are not enough.

The brokenness and frustration remain. The wounds remain and grow worse. It is here -- where we really hurt, where we really experience our infirmity, our need -- that we must turn to the Lord and call upon Him.

There is nowhere else to go, nowhere else to bring these burdens, this life, this cry of the heart. But the miracle of grace always awaits us.

Jesus on the Cross.

Jesus is the God who has already come to be with us, and who waits for us in our sufferings.

Only Jesus can carry this kind of pain, this pain that challenges my identity, that reaches all the way to me as a person. This is human suffering, and only He knows it all the way through. He is the True Man, who has united Himself to every human being. He is also the True God, the only begotten Son of the Father, who alone knows the depths of every person because He is the Source who whispers each person into being, and the Way, the Truth, the Life who calls each one to their destiny.

Our only hope is to abandon everything to Him. "Jesus, I give myself to You. Take care of everything." Again and again, whatever, and wherever, without hesitation, without fear... "Jesus I abandon everything to You."

He has made our sufferings His own on the Cross, joining them to His victory, which is the revelation, the giving, the pouring out of God's love.

This Love is the secret of all the beauty and goodness and all the promises and aspirations that awaken our hearts, only to increase our thirst. But Love has come into the world to be with us, so that we will never give up, so that we will persevere, holding on to Him, recognizing that everything belongs to Him.

This is the hope that changes and transforms life, that saves us. Where else can any of us go? We have to go to Him, and give ourselves to Him.

We have to trust in Him.