Greetings friends and family in Christ and Happy Easter! I hope everyone was able to experience and share in the JOY of the Risen Lord, Who is truly alive in the Eucharist and in our hearts! 🙂
Today, on the Feast of Divine Mercy, don’t forget that if you go to Mass and receive Holy Communion in a state of grace, Our Lord is willing to grant total forgiveness and remission of sin and punishment (aka NO purgatory time!)… God’s Mercy is truly superabundant, especially in these times we are living in of unlimited and unprecedented graces! Just to illustrate the power and scope of this promise, Jesus Himself has told us through “Anne” the Lay Apostle, in Volume 2: Conversations with the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus:
“Come back to Me now, My little lost soul, and I will lift all punishment due you. Repent and throw yourself into My arms. I will forgive you immediately. I have already done so. But in order to heal and to be comfortable in heaven, you must repent and seek My forgiveness. You must come to Me to seek My forgiveness. You must come and get it from Me. I am here, in the tabernacle. Come to Me here and I will forgive all sin. I will make you as pure as if you had never sinned.”
Wow…God is good! I once heard it explained that all of the sin of humanity throughout all time and space is but a drop compared with the infinite fires of Divine Love and Divine Mercy… No wonder Our Lord, who came specifically and especially for sinners, told St. Faustina, “My mercy is greater than your sins and those of the entire world.” Similar words of His were given to Maureen Sweeney Kyle on Divine Mercy Sunday, April 23rd, of 2006 in the United Hearts Field:
“Every fiber of My Heart desires to pour mercy upon the world. I search for the repentant heart which opens the way to My Mercy, but so few have sorrow for their sins. Many travel the road to perdition, thinking title, position or money merits their salvation. At their judgment, I look into the depths of their hearts. If they, at their last breath, turn to My Mercy, they are saved. Do not be discouraged by the numbers or types of sins you have committed. The greatest sinner deserves most My Mercy.”
Pretty amazing right? And yet, why are we so surprised at this? Could it be because we feel like we personally have simply gone “too far” or done something “too shameful” to turn back, like the prodigal son, to the Love of Our Merciful Father?
When I had my reversion to the faith a few years ago, I often wondered how someone who had been given so much, so many graces and blessings from God, and yet wandered so, so far could ever return to my former, childlike state of goodness and innocence, let alone attain the sanctity of the greatest saints! After all, I was the little boy who used to pretend to be the priest and reenact the Mass for my family at home and wear a rosary chain around my belt loop at school (they even called me Pope Gregory!)…and yet sadly I too had slowly given over to the sinful ways of today’s culture, becoming obsessed and overtaken by the vanity of my appearance and the impulses of my body. I was thus making a habit of mortal sin, damaging the beautiful state of my baptized soul (and those of many others around me) and losing the most precious and priceless of gifts, the Love of God within…and for what? Social reputation? Virtual popularity? Passing pleasures? Empty experiences? And yet, Jesus was always there, loving me even at my darkest, and especially then, for in my junior year of high school I remember vividly feeling so undeservedly showered with all the love and friendship I had so desperately sought after in middle school, which had been a difficult time for me of being bullied and feeling alone.
That night, in the backset of my mom’s Lexus parked at a local Walgreens (of all places), I remember for the first time in my life crying tears of joy, and feeling the actual physical sensation of a tender, warm, overwhelming embrace that could only have come from the God of Infinite Mercy and Unconditional Love. Since that day, it has been a gradual process of falling more and more deeply in love with Jesus in Prayer and the Sacraments, wherein I find the endless oceans of grace to purify myself of “self” and make more and more room in my heart for the One Who is Love Itself. I have fallen many times along the way and am in definitely nowhere near perfect, but I understand now that all God wants and needs from us every day is our utmost desire, willingness, and commitment to love and serve Him as best as we can, and when we fail, to simply rise again with the renewed resolve and unshakeable trust of a little child who knows it can do nothing on its own but depends on his strong yet compassionate Father for everything. The following metaphor from this inspiring work entitled “Saving Souls”, to me, so well embodies Pope Francis’ words that “God never tires of forgiving us; we are the ones who tire of seeking his mercy”:
“Look at your hands right now. They are clean not because they never got soiled, but because you wash them every time they get dirty. It is the same with your soul.”
And so, dear reader of these words, my earnest plea to you is this: Please. Do not let your past mistakes torment or define you. Do not allow your current addictions to rob you of your mission as a soldier of Love and your eternity in the Kingdom of Light. You have souls to help save, my friend…starting with your very own! As Jesus reveals in Volume 2:
“Indeed, I have special work for each one of these days remaining to you. If you will say “yes” to Me, I can rest more easily, knowing those tasks will be completed and souls, the certain number attached to your work, will be saved. Additionally, I will have the joy, the happiness of knowing that My immeasurable love for you is returned.”
So delay no further, but on this special day of untold grace, step away from whatever sin is hurting you and holding you back from being the most kind and loving, selfless and sincere version of yourself and step into the Confessional. Open your soul, with all its sins and scars and humbly, silently allow Jesus Christ acting in and through the priest to absolve and obliterate your sins, and restore and renew your soul. Then, you can rest peacefully on the Gentle Heart of Our Eucharistic Savior and even confidently go to receive His Body and Blood in Holy Communion (now in a state of grace!). With His True Presence within you, your heart will be filled to the very brim with the light, the warmth, the fire of His Divine Love. And I assure you: this Love is more powerful and vibrant than any force in the universe… and it will spill out over into every soul you come into contact with. Be not afraid, but listen now to the beautiful and freeing words of Our Lord Himself calling out to you, from “Jesus Speaks to Sinners”:
“I love you. I have forgiven you everything you have ever done against Me or against yourself. You are welcome in My arms and there is a place in My heart for you. If you make the smallest movement toward Me, you will see Me act with great speed to pull you back into the safety of your Christian family. My child, will you answer your Jesus? It is My voice you hear calling out your name. Come to Me now. You will look back on your life someday and you will see this moment as very important for your eternity. Do not hesitate. Your time is over and Mine has begun. Fear nothing. Accept My joy and accept My light. In all quietness, turn your eyes to Mine.”