Sunday, December 06, 2009

Empty Heart…

The Annunciation story (Luke 1:26-38) is the crescendo point of the theme of total grace and gift. Did you ever notice that Mary does not say she’s “not worthy”? She just asks for clarification. She only asks “How” because that might ask something more of her. She never asks if, whether or why!

That is quite extraordinary and reveals her egolessness. She becomes the archetype of perfect receptivity. It takes the entire Bible to work up to one perfect vessel that knows how to say an unquestioning yes to an utterly free gift.

Richard Rohr, adapted from Things Hidden: Scripture as Spirituality, pp. 31-32

How lovely is your dwelling-place, O LORD Almighty!

My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.

Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young—a place near your altar, O LORD Almighty, my King and my God.

Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you.

Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.

As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools.

They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.

Hear my prayer, O LORD God Almighty; listen to me, O God of Jacob.

Look upon our shield, O God; look with favour on your anointed one.

Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.

For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favour and honour; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.

O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

Psalm 84

Even so, come, Lord Jesus! Our hearts are empty, restless till they find rest in you.

[Final sentence paraphrases St. Augustine, from The Confessions]

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