One of the greatest gifts a father can give his children is for them to know that he believes in them. He believes in all they can be. This helps carry us through the dark times – when we’ve fallen down, when we feel like we can’t go on, when we feel like we just don’t have it in us – we hear him, even if he is long gone. “I believe in you, son.” “I believe in you, my daughter.” “Get up; you can do this.”
So it is with our Heavenly Father. He believes in us. He believes in all we can be. How do we know? By meditating on the wounds of His Son, our Savior Jesus Christ.
By meditating on His five wounds?! How can that be? Yes, by meditating on His five wounds. This is an endless source of grace:
Mary: “Start [the family holy hour] making the sign of the Cross five times offering yourselves to the Eternal Father through the wounds of my Divine Son. Do the same at the conclusion. Sign yourselves this way when you get up and when you go to bed, and during the day. This will bring you closer to the Eternal Father through my Divine Son, filling your heart with graces.”The Spiritual Diary (First Edition); Elizabeth Kindelmann; p. 28
As an aside, I should mention that the five-fold sign of the cross is not a prayer with a fixed set of words; it is a meditation. One could dwell for a long time on each wound. I encourage you, especially in your private prayer, to take the time to truly talk to our Lord and meditate on His wounds rather than just reciting a series of words. But back to our topic!
Usually when I meditate on these wounds, I pray in reparation for my sins and those of the whole world; I think of our inescapable guilt – that we did this; I think of our utter insanity that we would nail a living human being to a cross – no less a completely innocent one and even more so the very Son of God; I think of our arrogance that we not only did not recognize our Creator but now don’t even realize we are created; I think of my desire to join Him on the Cross – to place my hand in His hand, my feet on His feet, and my heart in His heart; I ask Him to send my hands and feet into the world for healing and to do His work.
However, recently, while meditating upon His wounds in Adoration, from out of the blue it struck me that these wounds show how much the Father believes in us. The Father did not make this great sacrifice of His very Son thinking we would fail. Each one of these wounds testifies to how much the Father believes we can be transformed by the power of grace, how much He is willing to put on the line in the firm belief that this sacrifice will lead to our salvation rather than our condemnation.
So, what about those who were not blessed with a father who believed in them? Those who were abandoned or were ridiculed and made to feel they would never amount to anything? What if you didn’t have a father who believed in you? Well, you have one now. Our Heavenly Father believes in you. He believes that you will respond to His call and His grace – so much so that He gave His only Son to redeem you.
Yes, our Heavenly Father did not send His Son believing we would fail but so that everyone who believes in Him might have eternal life.
So when life gets heavy, when we are struggling to carry the cross of Jesus’ love, when we’ve fallen down and feel like we don’t have it in us to get up, meditate on those five wounds and hear our Father say, “My son, my daughter, by my grace, you can do this; I believe in you. Get up and carry on.” Yes, Jesus, may our feet journey together!
Quotations from the Diary
p22: Jesus: “Do not be distracted when you make the sign of the Cross. Think about the Three Divine Persons . . . Make the sign of the cross five times, while thinking of my Five Wounds. Always look at my eyes bathed in blood from so many blows that I received even from you.”
p28: Mary: “Start making the sign of the Cross five times offering yourselves to the Eternal Father through the wounds of my Divine Son. Do the same at the conclusion. Sign yourselves this way when you get up and when you go to bed, and during the day. This will bring you closer to the Eternal Father through my Divine Son, filling your heart with graces.”