“This is the Christian life, this one thing: God is my Father, and therefore I am infinitely precious and loved by God, no matter what.” – Father Michael Gaitley
Because of some things that have been going on with people I love lately, I’ve found myself thinking about the story, ‘Hinds Feet On High Places.’ Have you ever read it? I highly recommend it. It’s very short! And it’s a beautiful allegory about the love of God and how it can transform us to be the person God has created us to be.
The main character is named “Much Afraid,” though her name will change once she is truly aware of the beloved child of God she truly is. Spoiler alert! Her new name will be Grace and Glory! Because of the grace of God she will be able to glorify Him with her new life.
Her fear will be removed and she will be filled with God who is Love. She will come to know compassion for those whose malice she now realizes was actually a suffering, inexpressible and really not understood, in those who chided her and criticized her when she was “Much Afraid.” It’s truly an awesome story that many could benefit from reading.
I quote Father Gaitley above because this is the knowledge that we need to have within our hearts, combined with God’s grace, to completely believe that He can change us into the person God wants us to be. We will only know this fact that Father Gaitley so succinctly shares when we take the time and intentionally get to know God. If you don’t know who He is, how can you fall in love with God? Only then can you experience the healing of your soul which comes from the forgiveness of your sins that only God can forgive. You are able to accept that forgiveness and to be grateful for it.
Once you know who God is and how He loves you, you begin to see that love spill over into people you know and meet. In the words of the great saint, Catherine of Siena, “Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”
Funny, but I can’t help think of the words of that great sage, Yoda, of Star Wars fame at this point, who tells the young Luke Skywalker, “Do or do not; there is no try.” We don’t have to work to get the grace that “Much Afraid” receives. We only have to be open, to surrender, to God and His immense, awesome love and mercy. He will heal, forgive, transform and then we glorify God with our lives and our words because of the grace He freely gives.
Come on. No need to try. Let’s set the world on fire.