That single phrase if embraced in and through the cross, with Mary, in Jesus, through the power of the Holy Spirit, is the beginning and the end of self death. It is the place where heaven is opened and we behold the angels of God ascending and descending Jacob’s ladder.
My will, my circumstances, my loss, my gain, my hopes, my dreams, my wife, my children, my vocation, my life, my next breath. It is finished. You want life? I do. You want to know the freedom of the Kingdom? I do. That cross of the King better do what it must, for I certainly cannot do it.
Lost in God, lost in the determinative will for your life even if you don’t care for the direction it has gone in. Lost in the divine for the sake of the cross, for the sake of His love, for the sake of Jesus Christ. Jesus, my Lord, let it be in my heart as it is in yours. Let it be in my tears as they flow down your Mother’s face. Let my love for you and your will take precedence over every single thing in my life. Whether rich or poor, in plenty or in want, for better, for worse, for richer or poorer.
You provide the fire, I’ll provide the sacrifice. I asked the Lord eight years ago why He wanted me to be Catholic while in a contemplative state of prayer. I saw a translucent sword that was as wide as my body coming down from heaven, while I was on the altar in my local parish, simply laying, in the vision. The sword struck me on the chest and I saw a gush of translucent light begin to pour forth out of my chest like a fountain, my heart the source from which it flowed. While I was in this prayer state I was in ecstasy. Years later, I asked the Lord what part of the body I was. He told me through a Saint in a moment of ecstasy that I was the heart.
I find this amazing, I have been through more heartbreak than I dare to contemplate. Twenty years ago, had I’d known of the pains I would endure for the sake of the Kingdom, I would have shuddered in fear at the cost of being a Christian. I have 12 children and a wife of twenty years, a desire for the Kingdom that has led me to isolation, all built on sand at the expense of my broken heart. Fruit is falling off the trees in my children for Holy Church–vocations, mystics–yet I am the sacrifice for my woman and the kids have received all the benefit.
I’m not so noble a soul. What of my benefit? Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and all these things shall be added unto you. And they will be, but they may not be for you. We stand in the position as receiver, but God looks upon us as givers. And the gift will not return void. But more times than not our sacrifices are for another, for it is better to give than to receive. Often we miss the gift itself in the process. Friends, your selflessness is the gift, your sacrifices are the gift. Your abnegation of self is the prize. Your obscurity, your broken love, you are the gift to yourself, what God has made in you, Himself.