Meditation Thought: “And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth.” (2 Timothy 24,25)
Cling in love to your family. Love begets love. To receive love, love must be given – but love is given as a result of love being received. There is no end to love, no limit in any dimension. Test love; experiment with love; make love your aim, your delight, your concentration. Let no other considerations take first place in your life; life has no worthwhile purpose and meaning without love.
Love is: kind, forbearing, gentle. If love is your aim and your desire, it is the living plant that cracks the hardest stone of resistance. The tiny seed of fresh love grows and grows and suddenly its persistent pressure opens up the hardest resistance. Do not give up on love: it may be that only the tiniest fraction more of gentleness, forgiveness, kindness or forbearance will be the impact that changes totally the hard stone of resistance, for once the stone is opened, love’s pressure moves ever more rapidly to split open the fissure.
The stone is not cracked for ill; the stone is cracked so that it may be shaped to be more beautiful, to serve in a more meaningful manner. As stones are cut in the quarry to build beautiful, sheltering buildings, so love reshapes hearts of stone to be used as building blocks for the temple of the Spirit.
Where the Spirit dwells, love dwells. Where loved dwells, evil cannot dwell.
The process is ongoing: there can be no changing without the pressure of the love. The stony heart has no opening in which the spirits can dwell: it is one solid mass of ego.
Reshaping it to be re-arranged in a temple to contain the Spirit does not alter the texture – it only enhances its natural beauty, making it ever more desirable and appealing: for the spirit shines on the temple, making it glow and revealing its unique character.
The combination of the ego and the proper shape and the proper proportion to contain the Spirit who created the ego is the visible image of the one who created us, expressed in our own unique, precious personality. As each child is precious to us, yet different from our other children, so are we each precious but different as children of our heavenly Father.
As love is also Truth, so must it exert pressure even if it causes pain, so that the temple may be built. We cannot always – perhaps even often – understand the manner in which our Father uses his love for us as pressure to reshape us, any more than our children can understand that the expression of our love for them by denying their desires when we recognize the danger of fulfilling their desires.
The key lies in the total trust of the parent: the willingness to believe that because our parent has proven time and again love for us, the insistent pressure pressed against our resistance to the change – the cracking – is good for us: when we reach that point, we voluntarily stop resisting, and aid in the parent’s intent to reshape us, thus speeding us the maturing and beautifying of our soul.
God will not stop exerting pressure to make us more beautiful in his sight, and others’ site, and in our own site, any more than we withdraw pressure from our children when we know from our more vast experience, and in response to our responsibility for their welfare, that the pressure is needed to make a change for the better for everyone concerned.
Prayer of response: Father, the pressure hurts. But by an act of my will, I yield to the pressure – the necessity of it; I bear it willingly, and seek to crack where you wish me to crack – and only where you wish me to crack. I trust you. You created me in love, you created me in your image which is love, and I seek to reshape my ego, which has hardened in an ugly shape of self-interest and the desire to have my own way.
Teach me, O Lord, the way to be a temple of the appropriate size, shape and dimensions to hold your Spirit. In Jesus’ precious name I pray. Amen.