Vulnerability as a Place of Divine Encounter by Deacon James Keating

Vulnerability as a place of divine encounter

  • God acts only for the good. God acts only to share Himself as love, namely Jesus Christ.
  • The human person is invited to respond to this revelation of love with His own vulnerability; he is invited to allow God to act in his being.
  • To be vulnerable to divine love = is to let the beauty of God wound us and so be filled with desire to commune with Him receive from Him and be taken up into Him.
  • beauty is the person of Christ. The Christ is beauty b/c he radiates the Truth of God’s own being: Love.
  • The Christian is to behold Christ as beauty itself and the cause of our “wound”, the cause of our very openness to love & loving.
  • We must open our hearts to receive such truth or we will miss the hour of our visitation and thus remain sadly unmoved by the love upon Calvary.
  • HUVB notes that the mystery of Calvary is the Source of all truth and is therefroe beauty itself. We must abide at this source and entrust ourselves to it as child entrust himself to his father. the drama of human life is clear: Will we rely on this source drink from it always or turn away from it and rely on our own mind and strength?
  • Do not think that God will love us b/c we are good, but that God wil make us good b/c He loves us ~ Lewis
  • To rely on the self contradicts all that is revealed about God’s love for us and our deep vulnerability before the circumstances of life. Our nature defines us as limited & tending toward sin.
  • We can at times believe wrongly that everything will be “okay” in our lives once we are perfect or invisble. This is a lie. we will never be perfect; and staying in this lie undermines what God wants to shasre most deeply with us: his own compassion in the sight of our weakenss.
  • to accept that we will never be perfect does not mean there will be no triumph over temptations. there will be even such deep healing that we become free from attraction to one or more sins.
  • to accept our frailty means that our lives are a long procession of battling temptation, offering it to mercy of God, and gratefully receiving the mercy that binds us to His heart.
  • if we believe the lie of perfection, we may come to believe, in the face of regular setbacks, that we are failures at being Christian, or we may judge others to be such failures. our advancement in holiness is partly measured by how well we no longer resist this truth: i am not god, and that is good.
  • to be dependent is to become a little child; to remain open to “listen” to God. the more like young children we are in opening our hearts to this source, the obedience of Christ to receive its riches, the more adult we shall be in opening our hearts to give to the world and its needs.
  • Christic maturity is a sustained choice to not keep one’s options open, but, instead, to choose the welfare of others. Jesus’ embrace of His own sonship as His identity was the paradoxical source of His stunningly mature love upon the Cross (Rom 5:7-8).
  • Jesus told the Father everything! Christ became the obedient one by remaining in a disposition of vulnerability towards the Father. Into this communion he invited his disciples to live with him. Jesus tutored the disciples in how to remain open to the Father.
  • Often we choose not to come to God for life (Jn 5:40). We choose to reveal ourselves to idols, those realities in our life that “have mouths but do not speak… (Ps 135).”
  • to be vulnerable before “idols” is NOT to be vulnerable at all; it is to have all our thoughts feelings & desire suppressed and swallowed up within our own puny ego.
  • to be vulnerable before Christ is a choice to come to life by revealing ourselves and trusting. to share our pain grief joy confusion with Christ is to enter the deepest levels of intimacy the only place where God lives.
  • to be vulnerable and share all the truth with Christ in prayer is the very substance of humility & living there is the only place there is life (Proverbs 14:11).

Vulnerability as a way of securing communion

  • so we stand before God as creatures “in need”. to draw life from Christ is first to reveal all that we carry in our hearts. this personal revelation is an effective way to stay with Christ, Vulnerability is above all a commitment to be radically affected by the beauty of the paschal mystery. vulnerability positions one …. (get notes).
  • in order to live the way of divine “wounding” or vulnerability, we have to become experts in noticing the interior movements of our hearts.
  • ** the key to vulnerability before God is to identify the deepest affective movements of the heart and show them to God. POUR OUR YOUR HEART TO GOD.

Staying in childlike vulnerability

  • first we place ourselves in God’s presence and ask him to raise up in our hearts the places of deepest vulnerability those places that we hide or those places that carry such beauty and joy that we subject them to scant attention of fear of tears ignited by the fullness of beauty
  • as the contents of our hearts gently arise receive them by name
  • it is this pouring by you and this receiving by Christs heart that maintains your communion with Him
  • spiritual intimacy = pouring out and receiving back = contemplative prayer
  • as we enter into a life of vulnerability – joys deepened & sorrows lifted
  • notice when tempted to repeat back o hardened heart & ask for grace to resist
  • we must be like children – vocalize every dream & sadness that passes through us.

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