In our scripture readings for the Second Sunday of Lent, we see heaven on earth. The Gospel tells us of the Transfiguration of the Lord. Jesus turns dazzling white and Elijah and Moses appear on the mountain. We also find heaven on earth in the Prayer over the Offering.
As we receive these glorious mysteries, we make thanksgiving to you, O Lord, for allowing us while still on earth to be partakers even now of the things of heaven. Through Christ our Lord.
We receive. In this prayer we learn that thanksgiving should be in our minds and on our tongues as we receive glorious mysteries.
Our glorious mysteries are the bread and wine, that through the working of the Holy Spirit become the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ. This is where the natural world meets the supernatural. While still on earth, we are partakers, or sharers, of things of heaven.
To receive, or "percipientes" in the Latin form of the prayer, means to take to oneself or to take in wholly. <br> What happens when human nature receives the Divine? The word that comes to mind is fruit.
Mary received the words of Gabriel when she said “May it be done to me.” Human met the Divine and Jesus came into the world. (Luke 1 and 2)
In Acts 1:8 Jesus tells the Apostles that when they receive the Holy Spirit they will also receive His power. They would be witnesses to the work that He wants to do through them. They chose to receive.
How do you change when you receive the Divine? Just like Mary and the Apostles, we, too, should bear fruit.
If you want to see more fruit in your life, I propose that you re-think the prayer, fasting, and almsgiving of Lent. Yes, these are things that we do, but the true purpose of doing these things is to receive. The Christian life is based on receiving.
Jesus died and rose again so our sins could be forgiven. We only need to receive his forgiveness.
Our relationship with God also requires us to be in a position to receive. He doesn’t want our hands busy doing, trying to earn his love, he wants them open to receive. Our prayer, fasting, and almsgiving should put us in a position to receive.
The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass also gives us the opportunity to receive. At every mass, the natural world is overshadowed by the Divine. As we receive the glorious mysteries, our hearts should be filled with thanksgiving as God gives us, while still on earth, a taste of heaven.
Thank you for praying with me,