Sometimes the Lord wants us to participate in human suffering.
At the end of Lent, I was thinking about how important it is to know how to live the painful moments, the suffering, being cast aside, loneliness, moments of failure, disappointment, and unfaithfulness – moments that are a part of the human existence because they are a part of the human reality. Sometimes the Lord wants us to participate in human suffering.
We must mature in this capacity to suffer and at the same time offer it to Jesus. To do this, it is necessary to speak to Him, to cry out to God about our suffering, kneeling with our eyes fixed on the crucifix.
We must form this way of thinking so that, in the moment of the Cross, we do not walk around complaining, trying to escape it, and wasting this precious moment in which Jesus is sharing the Cross with us and giving us a small part of His pain on the Cross.
Pain is a part of human life. Do not avoid it, minimize its significance, or talk about it in such a trivial way!
This is my experience as a weak and fragile woman. I know that many times I, too, lost those moments. When I reflected on my life and really saw how often this happened, I said to myself, "Look at what I lost. How immature I was!"
We have a three-word expression in Community to help us get through the moments of suffering and provocation: "be silent, swallow, and suffer." When someone criticizes or reprimands you, and you respond by defending yourself, the other young men in Community say, "You've missed the boat!"
What we mean is that you've missed the "boat" of maturity, of self-control, of the capacity to be quiet and to suffer with dignity in silence. I teach these things to the young people because, when they leave the Community, their boss at work will want to be right, their spouse will want to be right, their children will argue, and – without an doubt – someone must give in so that peace can reign.
Yes, peace is most important and to know how to "give in" is our strength and safeguard.
It is the mysterious school of the Cross, of our God who did not explain the Cross but welcomed it, experiencing the Cross in the body of His crucified Son. Jesus invites us to look at Him, to ask Him for faith and love, so that our heart will not lose hope, and after the darkness of Good Friday, we will know how to capture in our own lives the radiant light of Easter morning! The risen Jesus is our true hope, because in Him pain and death are defeated!
Mother Elvira Petrozzi, "Drinking the Cup of Christ."
Mother Elvira Petrozzi is foundress of Comunita Cenacolo, welcoming the lost and desperate in sixty-two houses in fifteen countries.Copyright © 2011 Catholic World Report
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