Tenderness in Mercy
Lourdes Pinto – October 5, 2017
Note: These are supplemental notes. To get a fuller and richer understanding of this teaching, we recommend you listen to the audio.
The Light of Jesus Christ is Love that Suffers All #88, Path p. 243
Jesus, in the first paragraph, explains what is meant by the “light of Jesus Christ”. He explains how He loves us:
Only love radiates the light of God, for His light is Love. The light of Jesus Christ is love that suffers for all and with all: Love in pain and sorrow, Love that enters into the brokenness of humanity and receives her brokenness into Himself to heal and restore her in God. Love receives her wounds and bears them upon His Body to heal her with the balm of His tenderness in mercy. This is the Light of the world. This is Love, the Word Incarnate.
We can conclude that the Light of the world is Love, Jesus Christ. He loves us by suffering for each of us and with each of us. It’s a love that is willing to remain in pain and sorrow. It’s a love that enters each of us and receives our wounds and brokenness upon His flesh and heals us with His TENDERNESS IN MERCY.
In the 2nd part of this teaching, Jesus explains to us how we BECOME His Light in the world. We must love as He does, only in this way are we truly His followers, for He came to show us The Way – He is The Way!
Receive My wounds, the sin, brokenness and oppression of your brothers and sisters, so that you can radiate My light in the darkness. This is love. The love of the world is self-seeking and self- centered, but the love of God is self-giving.
1 So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any incentive of love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfishness or conceit, but in humility count others better than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
5 Have this mind among yourselves, which was in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form he humbled himself and became obedientunto death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
The only way we can have the same love and be of one mind is for each of us to acquire the same mind (attitude) of Christ Jesus. St Paul is very specific in telling us what the mind of Christ is:
1. "He emptied Himself by becoming a servant" – He comes to suffer for all and with all. As a servant, He receives our wounds upon His Body and He gives us His tenderness in mercy.
2. "He humbled Himself & became obedient to death on a cross" – “Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered” (Hebrews 5:8) True humility brings us, like Jesus, to accept suffering, for it is ONLY in this way that we can accept the Will of God and follow Christ to the Cross.
The Lord, through the Simple Path, asks us one thing – “Suffer all with Me”, “Cry with Me”. He does not ask us to solve everyone’s problems nor to change anyone, but only to remain with Him suffering with Him. Yet, this one simple plea, thirst of the Heart of God, becomes so difficult for us. Why? Because to be transformed into Love requires that we not only suffer with Jesus but that we choose to love with “TENDERNESS IN MERCY”, for we can suffer without love, and this is how the multitudes suffer, but Christ thirsts for VICTIMS OF LOVE!
What does it mean to love with God’s tenderness in mercy?
“If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 9:23)
1. First, I must deny myself and do what is most difficult.
¬ Deny acting in resentment, anger, frustration, discouragement…
¬ Deny my desires to escape, withdraw, indulge myself in TV, alcohol, work, electronics, social media, distractions…
¬ Deny the passions of my flesh – gossip, promiscuity, impurities, talking, shopping, power, wealth, prestige,
¬ Denying ourselves = being emptied (emptied of self)
2. I must, like Jesus, humble myself by becoming the servant of the people most difficult to love. I must choose to serve them with “tenderness in mercy”. Like Jesus, I receive into my heart their wounds & brokenness, and, through the faculties of my hands, gaze and words, I pour Christ’s love upon them.
¬ Path, section 5-C, Tenderness, p.289
“When we were in darkness and in the shadow of death, the tender mercy of God dawned upon us. The Word came to us in human flesh. His touch and gaze reveal God’s tenderness, which He did not hold back because of our sins.”
I make Christ suffer because of my sin, yet He chooses to love me with His tenderness in mercy. Jesus delights in our repentance but detests our pride and duplicity (hypocrisy), yet even in our pride, He still chooses to love us in tenderness as He waits with patient anticipation for our transformation into Love.
¬ Path, p. 290
“Who continues to show tenderness while treated with offenses and rejection?”
¬ Path, p. 292
“Tenderness has the power to melt the most hardened hearts steeped in pride... The tenderness of God heals. The caress of God disinfects and cleanses our wounds. The tenderness of God brings peace, serenity, and rest to the afflicted, to the tired and those thirsting for love.”
¬ #106, Path p. 294
You have to choose to love those most difficult to love. You must always choose love, patience, and tenderness and never give in to anger and resentment.
The Lord commands of His disciples: “Take up your cross DAILY”
• These words from Jesus remain an abstract in our lives until we choose to love those most difficult to love in our lives and in the most difficult situations of our lives.
• The cross is lived daily through the continuous thorns and piercings we receive from the wounded, broken, & oppressed men, women and children in our lives, and those that we inflict upon ourselves.
• These difficult situations and people ARE GOD’S WILL in our lives. They are God’s grace to transform us into His living hosts – LOVE, and the means for us to participate in the redemption of souls.
• Example: A sister tells me: “I am not talking anymore; I’ve tried talking for years and nothing has changed.”
Here lies a moment of AWAKENING, of TRUTH – I don’t have the capacity to change anyone, and all those years of trying, even with the best of intentions, was rooted in my control, my pride, my plans, my dreams, my expectations, all in the “I”. This moment of awareness can lead us to choose between two ways:
1) Living with great resentment, bitterness, anger, hurt, fears… which all lead to isolation and separation – division.
2) Surrendering ourselves to GOD’S WILL and choosing to accept these souls as they are – my “Cristo Roto”. Choosing daily to carry my Cross WITH Christ in His tenderness in mercy, Believing that this *brings down the mercy of Abba upon humanity.
From the book "He Leadeth Me: An Extraordinary Testament of Faith" by Walter J. Ciszek Sj
"Only by faith could I find God present in every circumstance; only by faith could I penetrate the mystery of his saving grace, not by questioning it in any way but by fully cooperating with it in exactly the way he asked.It was then, in differing measures and with varying degrees of success, that the glimpses of his providence ruling all things would work to dispel the doubts and the fears that were constantly on the edges of the mind. So I learned by trial and error that if I wanted to preserve my interior peace and joy, I had to have constant recourse to prayer, to the eyes of faith, to a humility that could make me aware of how little my own efforts meant and how dependent I was upon God’s grace even for prayer and faith itself. None of this came easily, for I was not a disembodied spirit. Hunger could distract me, the interrogators could confuse me, a body aching in every joint and worn down by a long arctic day of grueling work could leave me totally exhausted and very much discouraged. It is much easier to see the redemptive role of pain and suffering in God’s plan if you are not actually undergoing pain and suffering. It was only by struggling with such feelings, however, that growth occurred. Each victory over discouragement gave an increase in spiritual courage;" p 118
3. I, as one with Christ crucified, am OBEDIENT to REMAIN on the Cross as one with Jesus’ sacrifice of love.
¬ I choose to live in Jesus’ SILENT CRY in the Eucharist.
¬ # 109. The Lord Says to Us: “I Need You,” p. 301
My soul cries without ceasing. My cup overflows with My tears. My beloved children are being lost for all eternity. As a mother laments for her dead child, I weep for My dead children, dead in sin. I need you, My faithful remnant, to save them from Satan's deception. I need you, My holy remnant, to suffer and cry with Me so that the mercy of God, our Father, can save them.
You are My Body. My eyes must pierce the darkness through your eyes. My hands must heal the multitudes through your hands. My feet must travel to the ends of the world proclaiming My message of love and mercy through you. My Words of everlasting life must be spoken through your lips.
The fire of My Sacred Heart must spread through your hearts that are consumed in the passionate fire of love in Me.
Raise up, My little one, My victims of love for the New Evangelization to begin.
¬ I must remember often, how in my pride, the Lord chose to continue loving me by waiting for me patiently to respond to His infinite acts of tender love. He suffered, and continues to suffer my brokenness, for I have not been fully recreated into Love. He cries for me hidden and silent before the throne of Abba obtaining graces of conversion and transformation for me, but only allows me to feel His tender smile, hear His encouraging words of love and support and feel His caresses. I have never felt Jesus repulsed by my brokenness. I have never felt Jesus turn away from me, nor give up on me.
This is how I must live as His spouse – His victim of love. Hidden and silent in the recesses of my heart, I live crying and suffering the brokenness of the souls given to me, but I must gaze upon each of them with the tender smile of Christ, caress them with the gentleness of Christ’s touch and speak to them words of encouragement, support and truth and only give self-knowledge if their hearts are open to receiving it.
The DAILY WORK of every MOC and MC must be to REMAIN embracing our Love crucified in His SILENT CRY for souls and giving to all His tenderness in mercy!