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  • Writer's pictureDr. Anthony Lilles

The Threshold into the Heart of God

Christ's crucified and risen humanity is the threshold in the Heart of God. Catastrophe unfolds in all social conventions that we once relied on, but in this sacred place, we are secure. Alienated, lost and ashamed, our true homeland is just a prayer away. Through His Mystical Body, the Good Shepherd reaches out to touch us and His voice echoes in our hearts. Through His Body and Blood, the Eucharistic Lord manifests and communicates inexhaustible treasures, riches we have secretly desired but never dreamed would be suddenly lavished upon us. Knocking at the door of our hearts, the Divine Pilgrim offers real connection, true understanding, meaningful love.

Gazing at us and searching our depths, this True Friend comes to us in warmest vulnerability. Uncreated Wisdom of God, He understands us in ways that we do not understand ourselves. The Man of Sorrows, He empathizes with our weakness and offers to heal the most painful wounds. The Rejected One, He challenges us to the very core of our being. The Revelation of the Mercy of the Father, the Healer convicts us, not to shame, but to forgive and to give a new beginning. Such is the threshold into the deep things of God—not one that we cross as much as does God out of inexhaustible compassion. He opens the gate, reaches through the portal with outstretched hands, and revealing His wounds for our sake, He offers His Heart.

Even as this yet unrecognized pilgrim walks with them, there are some who seek religious experience or else attempt great feats of spiritual industry. They want results and attain what their hearts seek. These achievements provide momentary relief and a sense of accomplishment. But as accomplishments limited to space and time, they are too limited for the heart. Too far beneath its dignity, the heart aches for something that is beyond its own power to achieve, for a Someone who alone can satisfy.

Even as this mysterious stranger questions their deepest fears, there are others who turn to created spiritual forces to gain security or find power. By degrees of deception, they are trapped into the realm of created things. Whatever power we grasp for has power over us. Apart from God, the passing splendors of this life only stir lust, covetousness, and pride, fanning fires that will burn with destructive force for all eternity. Thus, the Lamb who was slain humbly calls out in harmonies that shake the foundation of the world, that shatter self-made strongholds and that cast down false altars of the heart. Like a violent earthquake, the suddenness of the truth is unveiled and the opportunity to freely choose comes with shocking clarity. Blessed are they who He has moved to tears in this moment, for such tears quench fires unworthy of the heart's greatness.

Even as this mysterious Guest breaks bread before them, there are also some who want to give their lives to the One who they love. Even these find in their hearts such attachments, grievances, wounds and burdens that they are confounded. They cry night and day over their own sins and the sins of their dearest loved ones, and they wait for their Deliverer. They know that they will be measured by their own measure, so they humbly let go. The forgive and seek forgiveness. They stop trying to measure and they surrender—for a measureless love dawns upon them. In this Uncreated Light, they know that their hope does not disappoint and they long to see His Face.

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