Yesterday, I had the pleasure of seeing the new movie, "There Be Dragons." It is a film about St. Jose Maria Escriva, who founded Opus Dei. In this film, looks at the life paths of two men from childhood, one being Jose Maria and the other his childhood friend. The film shows how each individuals' paths unfolded and how they did or did not respond to God's plan for them. Jose Maria, essentially embraces the suffering of his life and the Spanish Civil War and turns to God. His childhood friend however, embraces vices, such as anger, hatred and jealous, hence putting his soul and relationships is dire jeopardy. Overall, the film shows that we all have a choice. We can either embrace God and seek to find in him each day, and follow his path, even in the midts of suffering, trusting that he is good and has a plan for us. Or, we cannot simply reject God's plan, the love he offers and the gift of life he offers to us. If we do the later, we will most definitely fall in peril. Also, this film is about forgiveness at its very core. It is about overcoming forgiveness with love, even in the midst of something like war, death and betrayal. Forgiveness is not easy, but what this movie shows, is that if we do not forgive when we are wronged or hurt by another, we are really one that suffers, because that unforgiveness will rot away at our heart and soul, creating anger and where love once was, a vacuum is left and if we do not forgive, that space will surely become occupied by the enemy, who wants us to hold on to past hurts, unforgiveness and sorrow. Those things planted by the enemy due to our lack of forgiveness will act out and they will act out in an evil vengeance if we are not too careful. It will negatively effect our closest relationships and even how we respond to others in our day-to-day lives.
Therefore, today during my fast, I have been concentrating on forgiveness. I have my own struggles with forgiveness and need to forgive others and let things go into the past and start anew, this hard for me.
I've also focused my fast today on marriage. It just so happened that today's reflection in my fasting book and in daily prayer book I bought years ago in Medjugore, both talked about marriage. Both works echoed how a purity of love that comes from God must be rooted in marriage and how important it is for couples to pray together and be a reflection of God's love. Both works also discussed about how spouses need to be an example to one another and to others (friends, family, coworkers) by living a love-filled life that is rooted in their faith. Essentially, both the movie and these reflections talked about the concept of love. For the last several months I have been thinking of this word "love" and am realizing it is more than a feeling, it is a daily decision, it is an action, a verb, a sure challenge, a risk, a vulnerability, but worth it. We must love like Christ loved. As Jesus said, "and now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love" (1 Corinthians 13:13).
Dear Father, may we be filled with your love so that we may bring it to others. May the love you fill us with help us to choose the path you are laying out before us. May the love you fill us with help us to forgive, even when it is most difficult. May the love you fill us with help us to heal. May the love you fill us with pour out of us on to others, so they may know your goodness and seek you. Help us to remember how very lovable we are, we do not need to seek love, because we are loved by you, which is the greatest love of all. I asked especially Lord today, that you pour out your blessings on all married people, may they be a living example of your love. Heal marriages that are struggling. Let your will done in marriages that are discerning. Help us to remember that marriage is also a vocation and a call to holiness. Help married couples to make the proper life giving decisions. Amen.
P.S. Here is a link to the trailer of "There Be Dragons," I highly recommend this movie http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk05XVC1EtY