Not a sanctuary made by hands but heaven itself (Heb 9, 24)
Jesus urges us to see to it that our surrender be like his. He wishes us divine fullness.
Everything has been given to us by God. He expects us to surrender it all to him. In this regard, serving as models are our Supreme Intercessor as well the widow who put ahead a foreigner’s need to her and her son’s need and the widow who contributed all she had to live on.
Not that God needs us. Were he in need, he would not tell us, for the world is his and all that fills it. And really, what kind of temple could we build for the Creator and Owner of the universe who uses the heavens as his throne and the earth as his footstool? We will be kidding ourselves if we stupidly delight in what St. Vincent called “certain foolish self-congratulation,” attributing success to ourselves and considering ourselves worthy of admiration for having done something for God (CRCM XII, 3; SV.FR VII: 289).
So, what our total surrender seeks is not that God may be complete—he is fullness—but that we may be complete. And human self-fulfillment requires that we grow in desire so that we may have a greater capacity to receive God’s gifts.
God’s gift being great indeed and our capacity to receive too small and limited, we must see to it that our desire for divine gifts grows and that we empty ourselves of everything to give more room for God and his gifts, empty ourselves of ourselves so that we may filled with Jesus Christ (SV.FR XI:343). This entails an examination of conscience.
Instead of enthroning God, do I not perhaps try to dethrone him, thinking of myself as having absolute knowledge of good and evil, with the right to seat on Moses’ chair and to “judge, sometimes with superiority and superficiality,” others? Do I not forget the selection criterion God uses, that he sent the prophet Elijah not to a widow in Israel but to the widow of Zarephath, that he approves the lowly who trembles at his words?
My worries about security, well-being, an ambition that possibly takes advantage of the most vulnerable, or anything that leaves me sleepless, without appetite or distracted at prayer, do not these show that there is much that is lacking in my commitment? Do I truly offer myself to God if I harbor duplicitous sentiments or do not give cheerfully?
Do I understand deeply and with gratitude that to remember the destruction of the temple that is the body of Christ is to be filled with grace and to receive the pledge of the glory of heaven itself?
Lord, enlarge our hearts.
Ross Reyes Dizon