Natus in Via
Born on the Way
Aug 25, 2020
St Louis IX, Patron of the Third Order
The Fruit of Love
For I firmly believe that you know
the kingdom is heaven is promised
and given by the Lord only to the poor
because she who loves what is temporal
loses the fruit of love…
St. Clare First Letter to St Agnes 25
When Our Lord was really serious – I mean really – He would emphasize His point saying “Amen, Amen, I say to you…”, or, at another time, He made His point with dramatic gesture like when He made a whip of cords, casting out those selling in the Temple at the beginning and the end of His public ministry (cf. Jn 2:15-17, Mt 11:11-13). At the same time it seems like the most beautiful and trustworthy, humble and speaking with an authority given to Him by the Father in the Holy Spirit… that He should be believed and followed with a simple word, a humble gesture.
In this life, we are a mix of both fervency and fear, generosity in living the Word and resistance. An example, both on the level of macro- (world) and of microcosm (the world of one’s self, body and soul) is the Parable of the Weeds among the Wheat in Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43. Our Lord gives the macrocosmic interpretation. In its spiritual sense it applies to the individual; although in the latter case, we must constantly pull the weeds. Love pulls weeds and receives the healthy death of the grains of wheat that life may burst forth in its place.
As fallen nature would have it, simplicity is not something easily found and maintained. We can tell this by its fruits, primarily peace and joy. By our God-given nature, we desire the Word of God, to live in His Will, in Him. By sad experience, we realize first the missing sweetness, the turbulence of the storms of life. Happily, the Father of majesty unbounded as revealed to us the Way of Life: “In Him was life, and that life was the light of men” (Jn 1:4). Jesus Christ is simple, and, if we seek, find, knock, we shall find Him and keep Him forever.
It would be a great joy to be able to receive the Word of God like Francis whom the Lord led “on a straight and narrow path. Desiring to possess neither gold nor silver, nor money nor any other thing, he followed the Lord in humility, poverty, and the simplicity of his heart” (Anonymous of Perugia 8). Or – I should say and – like Saint Clare, in her marvelous and holy simplicity. May nothing whatsoever allow us to lose the fruit of love, to give up our grasp of personal poverty before the largesse of the merciful God. We are in need of a Savior, and He has come and spoken, that His Joy may be in us, and that our joy may be complete (cf. Jn 15:11)
Fr. Paschal Mary, MFVA