The First Ecstasy

imagesmarystatueface (1)“Let it be done unto me.” O Mother how your words changed faith to hope. What was it like Mother? To be overshadowed, completely enveloped in the embrace of the Trinity? Reveal to me Mary the warmth and the light that captured you in ecstasy between creature and Creator! Who, but a favored soul, determined before all time, could stand in the rapture of pure love of indescribable joy? To know that your humility would impart innocent flesh to God’s perfect sacrifice requiring perfect love. What was it like to witness the Trinity transfigured about you while infused with the knowledge to hold this moment close to your heart. Still, for those eyes undimmed by doubt, your immaculate heart can be seen like John beholding the Lamb of God for the very first time. Just as it was with Simeon and Anna, the prophetess, who recognized the consolation of Israel when the infant Savior was brought to the temple. Yet it was Simeon who saw your heart, the favored one beating in tandem with the Holy One of Israel. Two hearts, the sacred and the immaculate inexplicably bound, synchronized in love. Foreseeing the very sword that pierced your Holy Son would forever martyr your immaculate one so your thoughts could be revealed to the generations that call you blessed. Hastened by irresistible charity to assist your once-barren cousin at the sixth month of her anointed pregnancy, it was not only Elizabeth that recognized the approach of your favored heart, but her unborn John who leapt at the tandem heartbeats of humility and promise proceeded by the Spirit’s warmth. Just as John the Baptist was pre-elected by the Father to clear a path for His Begotten, Mother, you were deemed ever more so. Simeon and Anna both envisioned the contradiction that you carried, one that would cause the rise and fall of many men. It seemed apropos and justly ironic that your fiat of blind trust to carry this world’s redeemer, for which no hospitality was offered in time of delivery, that you therefore accepted without hesitation in the ark of your favored womb. How you now reveal the wonders of your favor Mother, that transform the Ark of the Covenant with your sacred flesh anointed before time began. How two cherubim surely overlooked your every step preventing any man’s touch to corrupt what God had made holy and perfect. For it was not only your flesh that you imparted to the Begotten in perfect harmony with the Spirit but also your humility that the Father favored you to share.
To have this revealed in words is surely but a shadow… but to live through is pure ecstasy. I can now only surmise the moments of ‘ecstasy’ described in other lives following your God-man’s footsteps are but a tearful glimpse of the moment you and the Trinity joined as One.
Bless you Mother.

His,
Chris

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Lifting The Wedding Veil

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So many questions arise from my morning rosary, particularly as I contemplate the Lord’s Passion and resurrection. These ‘questions’ are born from a personal prayer to help me see something new and beautiful as I pray.

Questions like:

What does it mean to lift and carry our cross?
What does it really mean to see through the glass fully?
Is the event at Mt. Sinai, Moses veiled face, the tearing of the veil before the Holy of Holies, , the Bride of Christ and ultimate wedding feast find cohesiveness and fulfillment in the New Testament writings?
Finally, is fearlessness attainable?

Certainly, those four questions provide enough awe and wonder for just a simple man with a rosary walking his little dogs before dawn! What the Spirit so generously avails to the seeker surely emboldens the fruitfulness of prayer.

All those questions gel together through what I can only perceive through one woman’s perspective; Mary, the mother of the Christ of G-d. A mother, a favored Jewess, who held so many things within hear humility that can be gleaned through the same glint of a soldier’s sword that pierced the heart of her crucified Jesus. Mary well knew the first five books and the authority and Laws of Moses he revealed etched upon stones by the finger of G-d. For it was atop Mt. Sinai that the Glory of G-d even transfigured Moses to glimmer so brightly that He veiled his face upon returning to proclaim the physical evidence of the Divine. Yet even the splendor of this moment, as St. Paul contends, is of no splendor at all when compared to the Incarnation of God as man. It is beyond our understanding of fulfillment or climax of the merging covenants, that we can only chance a glimpse towards this unfathomable wonder at the weakness inherited by Jesus and dare the touch the tassels of the eternal Christ. Moses hid his glow behind a veil, like the Holy of Holies, leaving the Jews with a seeking heart. Yet the Jewish culture of living the life of Torah who could not recognize this Messiah, continued with a spirit of blindness, incessant debate, and ever hesitant to lift the veil of Moses. The Transfiguration of Christ, illuminated the hearts of the three apostles yet not their faces as they descended from that mountain. In the genius of the Father, and the eventual tearing of the veil following the crucified Ransom’s giving up His Ghost upon Calvary, forever changed the perspective of Grace written upon flesh not stones. Faith in the resurrected Christ, a disciple’s extended baptism, is a foreshadow of the Christ lifting the veil of His forgiven bride. Forgiveness is analogous to the Father reaching down to mercifully scoop up those who bankrupted their will for a Heavenly culture.

So how does that command to those who seek to follow in the footsteps leading to Calvary after picking up their own cross transform us into something new? The slow transformation of dying daily, moment by moment in constant prayer to self-important priorities is strengthened by a gift of faith through grace. Hope is infused immediately when the circumcised heart reveals the Laws of G-d’s love. As stony hearts incarnate by honoring Christ’s teachings, His immaculate Torah, through a fearless love of G-d through neighbor. Are we not saved as a community that is incorporated into a mystical Bride? To the Jews, the life of Torah was a ‘going out’ and ‘returning’ in hopes of expanding not simply a community but also the faithful’s very mind, heart, strength, and soul. When dignity is offered without judgment to those in distress, the dark glass becomes less dim. The slow transformation of the washing through synagogue readings slowly made this glass more translucent, leaving only hope to wonder what illumination exists behind the vision of G-d’s clear view of them. The glow behind the veil awaits our faith in believing that Christ has lifted this veil to finally kiss the waiting cheek of His Chosen Bride. Everything Christ has done was a contradiction to our reasoning. Everything. The veil does not hide the Trinity from the onlooker, but hides the Temple restored by Mercy within the faithful. Do you now see that judgment of another is futile when the dim glass of judgment is meant for our very self-introspection? Is this not why we must simply be still and simply ‘know’ G-d? Faith is a fearless and reckless love that attracts every believer’s yearning hope gazing within this vast love. Necessity of weapons are the fruits of the fearful who fail to comprehend the orchestration of Divine Grace is just insufficient. Soon, when every jot and title of Torah is fulfilled, when weapons are smelted into plows and garden tools, when every enemy of fearless love is put asunder as footstools for a Rightful King, our veil will be lifted, our face dried of tears will be kissed, and a servant’s seat will await those hungry to finally feast on G-d’s Love alone.

Yes… there will be tribulation now and more in our futures, by take heart, be of good cheer, and lift your burden made lighter by faith, hope, and love.

nyfireman

Become Love,
Chris

Song for a brave little man

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Jackie boy Blue
In the loving and living legacy of
Jackson Fineske

Lil’ Jackie boy Blue
Where did you go,
You’re so far away
But I still feel ya too
Lil’ Jackie boy Blue

Blue jays visits my window,
Each morn’in at nine,
He pecks the seeds,
As He looks in my eyes,
I smile and wonder,
When I last sat by your side,
Praying for miracles,
Yet whisp’ring goodbye,
Whisp’ring goodbye.

We heard you talking to Mary,
Our Mother of God,
She was holding you then,
As she’s holding you now,
Your Mama’s holdin you now.

Lil’ Jackie boy Blue,
Where did you go,
You’re so far away,
But I still feel ya too,
Lil’ Jackie boy Blue.

New drugs, procedures, cards, and toys,
Offering your life,
And hope for the next girl or boy,
Known as “Boss”- one tough little man!
Nurses named Mary,
God was watchin and He had plan,
God always has a plan…

Lil’ Jackie boy Blue,
Where did you go,
You’re so far away,
But I still feel ya too,
Lil’ Jackie boy Blue.

All through your pain,
You’d quietly smile,
You said, “Trust in Jesus
And never once complained,
You never once complained.

Lil’ Jackie boy Blue,
Where did you go,
You’re so far away,
But I still feel ya too-
Lil’ Jackie boy Blue.

By Chris Clody
3/16/17

Tears of a King

My morning prayer was consumed within Gethsemane, that dark grotto in the garden where Jesus prayed. His submission to His Father’s will was noted in an extraordinary way. Let’s dare to intrude on Jesus kneeling in the shadows knowing His “soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death” wringing with sweat, rupturing the tiniest of blood vessels, “and being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground” (Luke 22:44).
Any wonder why we couldn’t keep our eyes open to keep watch, joining Him is supportive prayer while we were outside the garden?
Like in the desert, Jesus, that very real and very human, once again confronts the will of His Father, accepts it, is ministered to by an angel, and presses on.
If you’re wondering about the possibility of Hematidrosis and “sweating blood” know that it happens only under extreme anguish. I believe there is even more symbolism regarding sweat tinged with blood outside of the obvious foreshadowing of His passion. His sweat would be a purplish color; that of a king. Like Mother like Son, Jesus held all these things to Himself – even to the point of death. Is this part of our cross? To bear the weight of anguish for others? If we are to be saved as a community within some bride-like concept, shouldn’t we learn to at least suffer alongside those society loves the least?
In the end, judgment will not fall upon our ability to proclaim His Name or even perform miracles, but rather by the compassionate deeds that illumined the hidden Christ within the thirsty, the hungry, the naked, the poor, the sick, and the imprisoned. Yes, in the end, Jesus will know us by the tears we’ve tasted.

Jesus-Anguish

Blood, Sweat, and Tears

Tears of a King,
Drop alone within the silence,
Magenta trails,
Etch hallowed cheeks from my offense.

Not mine but Thine,
Whispers the Man of our Sorrows,
Thy Kingdom come,
After death, scourging, and cock crows.

Accomplished,
A Father’s will redeems mankind,
For those who taste,
The tears He shed and left behind.

By Chris Clody
3/8/17

A Baby. A Manger. Our Continued Stupidity.

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Left to deliver humanity’s solution, a unwed, fourteen year old Miriam pushes and strains to relieve the weight of her conscience. A small fire dances off her furrowed brow as the crisp, shriek of an infant cuts the stench of sleeping animals. Quickly she wraps little, desperate cries in rags before pressing quivering lips to her breast to suck.  Yet something is not normal as Miram’s wide, brown eyes capture the glow of a star stream.  The night sky is aflight with wings, singing, and… Angels! Yes!! Angels!!! Armies of choirs and music thicken the air that tremble her bones as her newborn warms and feeds as one again with her.

In five days, those pushed to the margins will still to just survive by whatever strips of life they can grab in hope of adding some normalcy to a life far removed from you and I. Oppression is the very hand that pushes the “great unwashed” to the half-lit caves of society.  The sub-existence of a life truly loved by neighbor scrapes by in both the physical and mental realms of forced martyrdom. Yes, in five shopping days churches will gorge on unworthy amounts of praise and monies by some that darken their doors but twice a year. Money for a priest’s three-bedroom house, or a ridiculous addition to the a McMansion of the likes of Joel Osteen, or bonuses for the talented but truly ‘passionate’ motivational ring leaders providing amid streaming confetti-like snow and a wondrous, laser-light show.  Quietly money will find its usual course to some promised charity while other towards legal fees intent on “settling” and silencing their latest sexual or financial scandal.  Money will find hidden pockets and obscurity and before suburban streets are adorned green and tan by orphaned fir trees amid strewn cardboard boxes. Aaaaahhhh, the magic of consumeri…..Christmas!

Maybe you have another word other than stupidity-  if so, please insert here _______.  At what point does the ‘faithful’ grow up and begin wondering what took place 2000 years ago during the virgin birth of an unwed mother.  You know we have a word for that… More importantly, outside the colossal, bureaucratic, orthodox governance or entrepreneurial marketing grabs of soul-selling Christianity, the curious outsider must wonder if the ‘faithful’ ever dared their vanity enough to lose their faith in order to find that reason spoken to Miriam?  Has a priest or pastor ever lifted their voice against the comforts of job security to stop this deliberate anesthetic-doping of Christian movement gobbled up by our pill-popping, consumers?

That first shriek of a shivering infant will end with a painful, final gasp of an innocent life of the man called Jesus. Consider that cost and our opportunity to partake and explore the humanity of this man. Imagine if we missed this coming Sunday and hand-delivered our biannual contribution to a local mission?  Maybe, for once in our adult ‘journey’ we will come just a bit closer to understanding why an impoverished birth crowded the sky with undefined awe and otherworldly wonder.  Instead of the same old, same old overfeeding the wealth management staples of ‘Christianity’ how about doing something one of Christ’s disciples would do by seeking their brother, their master, their Lord, in the lonely and forgotten?  Imagine that.

Maybe that other word is “surreal”… Seriously, who are we fooling? Certainly not Jesus.

Run to Him for He is cold, He is hungry, He is naked, He is sick, He is poor, He is in prison, He has a single mom, He has been wrongfully accused and shamed because who we say He is…yet when you find Him you will find an immeasurable kind of love that explains why He came, why He died, and why we no longer need to fear oppression.

Emmanuel.

Chris

 

Revealing Thoughts…

My Body

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What is this I am hearing?
I cannot comprehend?
The child, now man,
From which I gave my flesh,
Offers it to me back again?

Vivid mem’ries explode,
A lowly handmaiden,
A virgin, with child,
Wraps so holy a seed,
Flesh of my flesh,
Bread now offered as bread to me again?

Once child, my only son,
Now Savior, still knowing,
He is truly Son of God.
Echoes of an Angel,
Merge with this bread He holds,
Impossible, yet not with God.

What is this I am seeing?!!
Fear tortures flesh I bore,
My Jesus, crowned Christ,
Now hangs in front of me,
Offers John, a son as your’s.

Alone.

Standing in disbelief.
A lance draws blood and water,
Cuts as deeply within my soul.
Motherhood dies,
To be given away
Once that soldier drew a hole,
Opening hope to hearts that grief once stole.

Sweet John,
Now offers me bread…

By Chris Clody
1/30/2106

Sand Script

cross(3)While reciting the Sorrowful mysteries during a slow walk with my two dogs this morning, I realized in my contemplation of His dragging of His cross, Christ was once again writing in the sand. Unlike His previous finger scribbles in the sand to convince a self-righteous mob of their sins, He now uses a rugged beam to gouge a torturous line to Calvary’s hill of horror. To most affected by gravity, the second message can be seen mostly from above. My thought again is of one through His mother’s tender gaze. Her view is a laser to each tear, bruise, or sputum quickly covering His innocent skin. Her sight is also panoramic to the silent tears of followers joining a gauntlet of people who range from the curious to hateful. She follows the writing of God. He, the Word, writes unhesitatingly a single line, the “I”, seen only by His heavenly Father and now His earthly mother. Soon the very eyes that see this sand script will encourage generations now called blessed. Seeing Christ with such intense intimacy will soon reveal to disciples the spear of sorrow that pierces the soul.
Will you, could you, pick up your cross and follow this line…

His Peace,
Chris