23 December 2009

Catching Something of an Immense Thought

Leading up to Christmas day, our Blessed Lady said something early in her gestation, while visiting Elizabeth – the Magnificat – which the Church prays every evening at Vespers. Dom Augustin Guillerand reflects on that prayer. The photo is a beautiful wintry scene at La Grande Chartreuse.

Magnificat… How can one magnify God? He is infinite greatness, and one cannot add to the infinite. One cannot alter and enlarge the limits of Someone Who has no limits.

One must not be surprised at these apparent contradictions when we speak of God. Our human language comes from something created; it is made to express things that are circumscribed. In face of the infinite, our stutterings tremble like human shoulders bent under an impossible load.

Yet our Lady uses this vehicle which we find so inadequate. Her thought is far vaster than the words that convey it.

Try hard to catch something of that immense thought.

And perhaps trying to catch something of an immense thought must also be applied to God as a Baby in a manger. Surely our thoughts must be far vaster than, “You shall find the Infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and laid in a manger” (Luke 2:12). As we spiritually travel to Bethlehem to see that Infant, as Dom Augustin Guillerand continues with his reflection, that Child from heaven we must never turn our gaze away from. Here are more of Dom Augustin’s thoughts.

In the midst of all horrors, atrocities and crimes which are being committed in the world, God sees only His Son. He gave Him to the world: an immense, infinite proof of His love. God so loved the world that He gave His only Son. The Word passes down the centuries, radiating light and love. He was the true light that enlightens everyone coming into the world, inviting everyone to come and be united to Him. He gave them power to become children of God. God sees only this well-beloved Son, and those who in receiving Him become His living image, His reproduction. The world exists for no other purpose than this.

God does not force us to come to Him, for then love would not be the true motive. There must be a loving response on our part. Some accept Him, and then God loves them in His Son. United to Him, they become one with Him, and the Father looks upon them both with a single regard of delight. Others refuse Him, and God seems to leave them to themselves, to what they have chosen, to follow their own way, as if He no longer looked upon them: but only as long as their refusal is obstinate and persistent, for He calls to everyone again and again.

Indeed, at Christmas God calls each of us to the stable at Bethlehem, that we may accept His offering of love, the gift of His only Son; and God, then, will love us in Jesus and look upon His Son and us with a single regard of delight.