The Father's Splendor

Mother M. Angelica

CONTENTS

The Father's Splendor

The Wisdom of God

The Providence of God

The Mercy of God God is Love Omnipotence (Power)

Goodness

God is Immutable (Changeless)

Omnipresence

Immanence

Transcendence

His Tender Justice

Omniscience (God knows all things)

Unity

Litany of Divine Attributes


THE FATHER'S SPLENDOR

During His lifetime, Jesus gave me many examples of the Father's Attributes. He showed the Father's Mercy when He asked forgiveness for His enemies, the Father's Providence when He trusted Himself to the care of others, the Father's Love and Compassion when He healed the blind and lepers, and the Father's Power when He calmed the storm at sea.

By His life, death, and resurrection, He merited for me a participation in all of the Father's beautiful attributes. I have been called by the Father to be Holy, given the Way of Holiness by the Son, and given the means to Holiness by the Spirit, that I may reflect every day in some way these Divine Attributes.

Jesus has told me to be perfect as my Heavenly Father is perfect, and that means I must share in a finite way in His perfections.

This is possible only because Jesus became Man and took within His Human Nature these attributes of the Father through the Per of the Holy Spirit. He promised me that I would do greater things than Ho did (Jn. 14:12), because He would intercede with His Father on my behalf and send me His Spirit to teach me all things.

Jesus has asked me to be Merciful as my Father is Merciful, Compassionate as He is Compassionate, and to love my neighbor as much as the Father loves the Son: "I give you a new commandment—love one another just as 1 love you" (Jn. 13:34). "As the Father has loved Me, so I have loved you" (Jn. 15:9).

Through Jesus, and in Jesus, I have been called to be holy—with God's own Holiness. I must look at these marvelous Attributes and make them part of my daily life, as Jesus did, to glorify the Father and be transformed into another Christ on earth.

All during His life, Jesus was absorbed in His Father. He desired nothing but the Father's Will. He taught the Father's Love, and glorified the Father by all His works.

Jesus looked upon my misery and weakness and gave me His Holy Spirit to teach, direct, and fill me with Grace, Gifts, and a Divine Participation in His Nature, that I may share, in some way, in the very life of God.

St. Paul tells me in 2 Cor. 3:18 that I must reflect Jesus like a mirror.

I am a mirror to my neighbor, and in that mirror he must see a reflection of Jesus. If that mirror is cloudy or distorted, Jesus' reflection will be so vague it will hardly be seen.

I must keep my mirror as clean and bright as possible so Jesus Face will be clear and strong—so strong that the mirror disappears and everyone looking into it sees no one but Jesus.

I am called by the Father to reflect His Son, in whom the Holy Spirit manifested in a visible way the invisible attributes of God.

This seems to be an impossible dream except that Jesus Himself said, "I have given them the Glory You gave Me, that they may be one as we are one. With Me in them and You in Me, may they be so completely one that the world will realize that it was You who sent Me, and that I have loved them as much as You loved Me" (Jn. 17:22-24).

The world will know that Jesus is truly God's Son by the reflection of His own attributes in my soul.

I must look and see what God is, and then keep the mirror of my soul clean and bright so what I see and contemplate may be reflected to my neighbor.

When my neighbor sees me being merciful when offended, compassionate with the faults of others, kind to everyone, calm in times of tension, loving when not loved in return, and full of joy—then he will know God lives—and Jesus is Lord of All.

I will ponder and see how the Attributes of God affect my life, and how I can have a share in their splendor.

The Divine Attributes seem to affect my life in different ways. Some fill me with such awe and wonder that my soul seems to rise above itself, above the petty mundane things in life that weigh it down.

The Father lets me share in other Attributes, such as Mercy, Compassion, Love, and Goodness, and these make me more like His Son.

In the Attributes I share, some seem to be just for me—Peace, Tranquility, Omnipresence; others affect my neighbor—Justice, Mercy, and Providence.

Some Attributes keep me aware of His Presence in His Creation: His Power in the wind, His Beauty in a sunrise, His Splendor manifested in the leaves blazing forth various colors in Fall, and His Changelessness in the mountains.

I am surrounded and permeated by His Essence, and held in creation by His Omnipotence.

My life is truly filled with God and I knew it not.

His Mercy comforts me when I fall

His Providence takes care when I worry

His Goodness makes me good

His Power upholds me

His Love fills me

His Wisdom is my guide

His Changelessness gives me security

His Tranquility makes me calm

His Majesty fills me with awe

His Beauty entrances me

His Joy sustains me in sorrow

His Light enlightens my path

His Omnipresence surrounds me like a cloak

His Immanence fills me through and through

His Transcendence is above me like the warm sun

His Grandeur thrills my soul

His Unity brings all things together in Him

I lose myself like an atom in the universe, when I realize that this Great God loves me.

His Power pushes a tiny seed through the ground, His Wisdom designs its growth, His Providence nourishes it, His Generosity makes it bear fruit, and His Goodness gives that fruit beauty, taste, and fragrance.

His Goodness gives a refreshing fragrance to a rose, an overwhelming beauty to a sunset, a pleasing harmony to music, various flavors to food, and a variety of textures to everything His Power has created.

When I sin, His Justice makes me fearful, His Mercy gives me hope, and His Goodness restores me to Grace.

His Power created me, His Wisdom knit me in my mother's womb; His Providence sustained me; His Omnipotence breathed a soul into my body; His Goodness brought me forth in a world of beauty and in a family filled with love.

His Beauty is manifest in flowers and field, His Serenity in the tranquility of the sea, His Light penetrates to the depths of my soul, and His Changeless Love enfolds me.

His Omnipotence is reflected in the vast size and distance of the sun, His Changelessness in its rays, and His Intelligence in the multitude of ways those rays work for my good.

His Wisdom sees every detail of my life; His Providence protects me; His Mercy forgives me; His Goodness brings good out of my mistakes; and His Joy fills my life with many oases to rest and take courage.

As I work and labor for my bread, His Light gives me ideas; His Omnipotence makes me creative; and His Omnipresence keeps me company in lonely hours.

His Love is always there when I feel unloving and unloved; His Peace is ever ready to fill my soul when I am disturbed; His Justice will take care of the persecutions I have suffered, and His Compassion assures me of His Love.

His Wisdom designed His creation; His Power brought it into being; His Providence disposes and orders all things in their proper place, and His Goodness gives it all to me.

Prayer: O Lord and Father, Your Attributes make me humble and fill me with Joy. Let the contemplation of Your Splendor raise me above the things that weigh me down, make me realize the dignity You have given me and the heights to which you have called me. Let the reflection of Jesus in my soul touch my neighbor, that together we may give You Glory. Amen.

THE WISDOM OF GOD

God knows Himself and every created thing perfectly. Not a blade of grass or the tiniest insect escapes His eye. Wisdom is not a part of God as it is a part of me—it is God. Wisdom is the very Being of God.

No creature, not even the most exalted angel, can understand God or have perfect knowledge of Him. God alone knows Himself, and Wisdom reaches into the depths of God.

It follows that since God knows Himself perfectly and I exist only in Him, He also knows me perfectly.

He knows me so perfectly that it is impossible for Him to know me any better. All my actions, thoughts, and desires are before Him.

God does not know me because I exist—His constant thought of me causes me to exist.

God really knows me, and because He does,—I am.

His Wisdom determines the path of thousands of known and unknown worlds in the universe. Each one races through space at fantastic speed, in the orbit marked out for it by God. Men and nations come and go but these giant masterpieces of His Wisdom go on with such precision that we can determine their speed to the second.

I think of all creation as a product of His Power, but it is also a manifestation of His Wisdom—from the tiniest weed to the most exotic flower in the wilds of an unexplored jungle—each is a perfect work of art, shouting aloud to my soul the Wisdom and Glory of the Lord.

My own soul is proof of His Infinite Wisdom, for He created it to His own image and likeness. What a marvel to behold! The most glorious sunset, the most ravishing landscape, and the beauty of the ocean, all fade into nothingness in comparison with the Wisdom of God as it manifested itself in the creation of my soul.

God's Wisdom and my wisdom are Poles apart. For me, a thing must exist before I know it, but with God it is different—He must know it before it has existence.

God's Wisdom knew me long before I existed, and brought me into being, and sustains my every breath from moment to moment.

God, who keeps everything in existence, knows every detail of His creation—knows it clearly without confusion or obscurity.

Not the smallest insect or molecule escapes His eye or His Providence.

He not only knows all my actions but my every desire and heartbeat. Nothing escapes Him, and nothing happens to me that He does not know, permit, or ordain.

My future lies before Him as clearly as the present moment. More than that, my whole life lay before Him clearly and distinctly before He created anything. From eternity He knew me and will continue to do so for all the millions and billions of ages to come.

The Wisdom of God is so great that He also knows exactly what I would think and do under every possible circumstance and situation, and He placed me in that state of life and situation best suited for my salvation.

This all-embracing knowledge extends to all possible creatures—all the creatures He could create but never will.

An All-Wise God loves me.

Consideration:

I can draw great benefit for my soul when I think about His Wisdom. The contemplation of this Attribute fills my soul with awe, reverence, and a deep sense of His Grandeur. My God is no small God but a Great God indeed.

This Attribute produces within the depths of my soul a profound humility and a realization of my finiteness. All the wisdom and knowledge of all the Angels and men combined are as a grain of sand on the seashore compared to the knowledge and wisdom of my Father.

His Wisdom causes me an interior joy and peace when I begin to understand He is so wonderful. His perfect knowledge of me gives me comfort in times of sorrow, patience in times of pain, and security when I know I can address Him at any time, in any place, and speak to Him as a friend speaks to a friend.

When I feel sad at the thought of leaving the things of this world or losing them, I will look at these things in relation to God, and then I will realize their true value.

I have a tendency to judge everything in its relationship to me instead of the value it has in God's eyes. I cannot judge everything solely on its good or bad effect on me. I must go beyond appearances and seek the Wisdom of God through the eyes of Faith, and value everything as it is before God.

I will look at my neighbor and appreciate his value before God in whose image he was created, and not judge him by my feelings toward him.

Prayer: O God, let the thought of Your Wisdom fill my soul with humble awe and an exalted joy at Your perfections.

Scripture

O Divine Wisdom, in You is the Spirit of Understanding: holy, one, manifold, subtle, eloquent, active, undefiled, sure, sweet, loving that which is good, quick, which nothing hindereth, beneficent, gentle, kind, steadfast, assured, secure, having all power, overseeing all things, and containing all spirits, intelligible, pure.

You are more active than all active things, and reach everywhere and penetrate everything by reason of Your Purity. You are the vapor of the Power of God, and a certain pure emanation of the Glory of Almighty God, and therefore no defiled thing comes to You.

You are the brightness of Eternal Light and the unspotted mirror of God's Majesty, and the image of His Goodness. And being but one, You can do all things; and remaining in Yourself the same, You renew all things, and through all nations You convey Yourself into holy souls and make friends of God and the prophets.

You are more beautiful than the sun, and above all the order of the stars; being compared with the light, You are found before it. For after this comes night, but You are never overcome by evil.

You reach, therefore, from end to end mightily, and order all things sweetly. (Wis. 7:22-30)—Douay.

THE PROVIDENCE OF GOD

It is easy to identify the Wisdom of God with His wonderful Providence. God's Providence disposes and directs everything for His own Honor and Glory and the happiness and good of my soul.

All of His creation in some way contributes to my good. I look at the sun and find that it contributes to my well-being when it paints flowers various colors for my pleasure, hardens clay to make my dishes, and melts snow to swell the rivers, only to draw up the water by evaporation to fill clouds that rain upon the fields and prairies.

His Providence not only guides the pathway of galaxies—but determines the life and death process of bacteria in a drop of water.

He created everything and everyone for a reason—everything from an Angel to a dewdrop. All without exception He has foreseen and regulates to the smallest detail.

Every situation in my life, even the most painful, is ordered by His Providence for my good.

His Providence is so immense and powerful that although it embraces all of creation, it takes care of every small detail of my life, to the very hairs of my head.

His Providence surrounds me so completely that I neither live nor move without it.

He keeps the entire universe in perfect order for my benefit and pleasure, and yet He seeks His rest and pleasure in my soul.

He takes care of me as if I were the only being He ever created. Every facet of my life is important to Him—nothing is too small for His interest or too great for His Power.

Nothing escapes His Providence for He holds all creation, animate and inanimate, in the palm of His hands, working and arranging all things for the good of my soul.

His Providence extends to the sufferings in my life, even the most painful, for He weighs every sorrow in the scale of His Mercy, fitting to my shoulders the cross I can carry best.

God's providential action is present in every human event—in my life, in my country, in the whole world.

Everything that happens is a message to me of this providential care and interest.

His Providence protects the freedom of His creatures by permitting evil, but it turns that evil to some good for those who love Him.

His providential care reaches to the painful and difficult situations in my life, as incomprehensible as that may seem, and turns them all to my good.

His Providence gives me the opportunity of rising after a fall with deep humility and greater confidence in His strength.

His Providence helps me choose the right thing at the right time but stands by me if I make the wrong choice.

An All-Provident God loves me.

Consideration:

The Father disposes and directs everything for His own honor and glory and for my good. His Providence fixes the order by which I will glorify Him, and as the image of Jesus grows brighter in my soul, that image is reflected back to the Father.

The Father sees Jesus and my soul shares more and more in the life of God. Jesus reminded me of this when He said, "It is to the glory of My Father that you should bear much fruit" (Jn. 15:8). "All I have is Yours (Father), and all You have is Mine, and in them I am glorified" (Jn.17:10).

Everything that happens in my life is ordained or permitted by His Providence for my good. I may not understand why some things happen, but my contemplation of His Providence assures me that I can trust Him in the darkness and know He looks after me as a mother her only child.

He knows my needs, difficulties, and desires. He listens to my every sigh and sees every tear. His Providence surrounds me completely, and though I do not see the end of the road, I need never fear, "His Providence rises before the dawn."

Prayer: Wise and Merciful Father, Your Providence surrounds me and directs me with loving concern. Grant me the humility to give myself completely to Your care.

Scripture

Lord, You are good to all and Your tender mercies are over all Your works. Let all Your works praise You, O Lord! You open Your hand and fill with blessings every living creature; You execute judgment for them that suffer wrong; and give food to the hungry. You loose them that are fettered, and enlighten the blind. You lift up them that are cast down; You love the just, O Lord. You heal the brokenhearted and bind up their bruises. You cover the heavens with clouds, and prepare rain for the earth. You make grass to grow on the mountains. You give the beasts their food. ... O Lord, at the remembrance of Your immense Goodness all creatures break forth in praise and acclaim Your liberality (Ps. 144-145-146).

THE MERCY OF GOD

The Father showed His Mercy when He sent His Son to bridge the gulf between His Holiness and my misery.

His Love bends down to my weakness and forgives.

He pursues my soul with love and tenderness when I sin by giving me a conscience to discern my offense.

He pardons and cancels all my debts when He sees my sorrow, and hears the sighs of my repentant love.

It is not enough for Him to forgive my sins when I repent—He covers my wounds with the Precious Blood of His own Son and makes my soul beautiful to behold.

He wants me to bury my sins and the burden of my weakness in the ocean of His Mercy so that not a trace of them remains.

I look at the universe—vast and immense—and yet, in my regard, His Mercy is beyond all that—it is Infinite.

I have only to say, "I'm sorry" with sincerity, to bring down upon myself His forgiveness and compassion.

His Mercy is drawn to my misery like a magnet and envelops my soul like a protecting shield.

His Mercy encompasses me to the degree that He no longer remembers my offenses.

When I am repentant, His Mercy toward me glorifies Him to such a degree that all of Heaven rejoices.

No matter how hideous the sin, His Mercy reaches out tenderly to one act of sorrow and contrition.

His Mercy is so great that I will never be able to comprehend its length and breadth.

His Mercy is limited only by my lack of confidence.

He revealed to me His own intimate life by creating me to His image and likeness and then elevating that likeness by giving me a share in His own nature at Baptism.

A Merciful Father loves me.

Consideration:

I am the recipient of God's Mercy, and the best way to show my gratitude for His Mercy in my regard is to be merciful to my neighbor.

I find it hard to forgive and forget, so I must absorb some of His Mercy by bringing to mind how God is the first to reach out to me when I have offended Him. He does not remind me of my sin, nor does He remember my offenses—His Mercy is vast and unending.

He stoops down to me with great compassion and heals my imperfections with His Perfections, my weakness with His Strength, my coldness with His Love, my frustration with His Peace, and my darkness with His Light.

The realization of my own weakness and the contemplation of His Mercy will make me understand the misery and imperfections of others. There is no other Attribute in which I can participate, that will imprint the image of Jesus on my soul as quickly as Mercy.

When I am merciful, I resemble Jesus, the perfect image of Mercy—and the Father fills my soul with His gifts and graces as I render mercy for mercy.

Prayer: Merciful Father, let Your Mercy envelop me like a cloak and keep me humble in Your eyes.

Scripture

O Lord, You are compassionate and merciful, longsuffering and plenteous in Mercy. You will not always be angry, nor will you threaten forever. You have not dealt with me according to my sins nor rewarded me according to my iniquities. For according to the height of Heaven above the earth, Your Mercy surpasses my merits. As a father has compassion on his children, so have you compassion on those who fear You. For You know our frame; You remember that we are dust. Everything will pass; but Your Mercy, O Lord, is from eternity unto eternity to them that fear You (Ps. 102:8-17).

GOD IS LOVE

St. John does not say God possesses love but God is love (1 Jn. 4:16). I may have love in varying degrees, but with God it is different. To think of God is to think of love; to be filled with love is to be filled with God.

It is difficult for my finite mind to comprehend that what I possess, He is.

When I love someone I wish him everything that is good, enjoyable, pleasant, lasting, and beautiful. The amount of these good things I wish will depend upon the degree of love that inspires these desires. One thing is sure, regardless of degree, love desires to diffuse itself by seeking and procuring the good of others.

God's Love, like Himself, is infinite, and the good He desires for me is infinite—it is beyond my wildest dreams—it is personal and totally mine.

It was an act of God's Love that brought me into existence, and that Infinite Love could not bear to have our nature so different so He infused a part of Himself into my soul at Baptism so that I may call Him Father.

I have a glimpse of Infinite Love when I realize the Father gave His only Son to take upon Himself the humiliation of assuming my human nature, living a laborious life, and dying an ignominious death—just so I could be with Him in the Kingdom.

His Love was not content to call me forth out of nothingness to a natural life—His Love elevated me to a supernatural life—a life of deep union with the Trinity in my soul.

Human love is beautiful and deep but I know of no-one who loves like my God, who was willing to sacrifice an only Son for the sake of an enemy.

The Father showed His Love by creating me and sending His Son; the Son showed His Love by living and dying for love of my love; the Spirit showed His Love by coming to earth as Teacher and Guide and making His home in my soul.

Love yearns for equality, but since I could never reach Him, He came down to my level to let me experience the realization of being the sole object of His Love.

Jesus' burning Love for me concealed His Divinity, Majesty, and Splendor to give me courage to approach Him and return love for Love.

Jesus' Love caused Him to leave perfect bliss, unsurpassing joy, and majestic splendor for poverty, privation, and obscurity—for Love of me.

God loves Himself as the only source of Good, and He loves me, not because I am good but because His Love makes me good.

God's Love for me then is free and gratuitous. His Love for me is benevolent because He desires everything that is for my good.

God's Love for me is beneficent because He directs and accomplishes and gives me everything that is for my good.

His Love for me did not begin when I was created. He loved me before time began. Throughout the unnumbered ages of time—before He created a star or a blade of grass, He knew me and loved me.

He never wearies of expressing His Love for me by arranging the innumerable little joys that cross my path.

Throughout His revelations to His Prophets and Apostles He ceaselessly reassures me of His Love and Mercy.

He tries to imprint upon my mind, by images of the Good Shepherd and the Father of the Prodigal Son, His tender Love and Compassion in my regard.

A God of Love, loves me.

Consideration:

All the Attributes of God fill my soul with awe and admiration but none fill it to overflowing as His Infinite Love.

If Love is proven by sacrifice, then He can love me with no greater love for He gave His only Son to live and die for me.

His Love sends me every joy and permits every sorrow. His Love draws me to Himself in consolation, and then withdraws His sensible Presence to purify my soul from all self-seeking.

His Love encompasses me in every difficult situation to assure me that all is well.

I must return love for Love, and render to my neighbor those things I cannot render to God, such as, loving forbearance, loving forgiveness, loving when I am not loved in return.

His Love for me is always infinite—it never changes, it always understands, it constantly reaches out for a return of love, and it blazes forth when I am repentant to assure me of forgiveness. I must make every effort to love my neighbor as He loves me, for in this way I will share more and more in this Divine Attribute.

Prayer: O Lord, before the world began You knew me and loved me. When the time of my creation arrived You saw me with all my failings and sins and yet You loved me. Let me bury myself in Your Infinite Love like a tiny drop of water in the ocean, that I may be eternally surrounded by Your Merciful Love.

Scripture

Let us love one another, since love comes from God .... because God is Love.

God's Love for us was revealed when He sent into the world His only Son.

God is Love and anyone who lives in love, lives in God, and God lives in him (1 Jn. 4:9,10,16).

OMNIPOTENCE (Power)

The Power of God is beyond my comprehension. He has merely to will to accomplish.

His Power is so great that He can do anything He wills, when He wills, as He wills, without limitation.

He has only to will before anything exists, and this He does without effort. His Will alone is sufficient for anything to be.

His Power can create the smallest atom or the greatest galaxy—without time, effort, fatigue, or materials. His Will alone is all that is necessary.

God's Word is always effective and always produces whatever it expresses. My words, on the contrary, cannot create anything; I can only change what already is, into something else.

There is nothing impossible to God. His Power can change a sinner into a saint, and derive good from evil, without interfering in the least with man's free will.

His Power is always magnificent and infinite, for the same Power that created Angels—those supreme intelligences, also created the tiny insect without intelligence, and yet both creations are a wonder to behold; each needed His Infinite Power, for each was created out of nothing.

His Power keeps all of His creation in existence without difficulty or confusion. He governs their course without labor or fatigue.

His Power reached out and touched nothingness and all creation came into being.

God alone is omnipotent, for He alone can look at nothing and make something. His Power goes beyond that—it sustains whatever it creates as long as He wills.

His Power never reaches some peak of perfection and then decreases—it is always complete. No matter how much it diffuses itself in creation it never decreases in the least—it is always the same, yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

It was an act of Omnipotence that created my soul. My parents were not allowed even the smallest part in its creation, for my soul has no parts, nor was it made in stages. It was created instantly by God's Power and Will alone.

It took great Power to create such a small image of such a great God, for my soul resembles the Trinity. My memory resembles the Father because like Him, I know myself; my intellect resembles the Son because I understand what I know; my will resembles the Holy Spirit because it has power to choose and to accomplish. I possess then, three faculties, each distinct yet perfectly one. In me, a finite creature, each faculty working with the other makes one soul. In God—Divine Omnipotence—each is a Person, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—one God.

All of creation resembles in some way all three Persons whose Power put it into motion.

There are three kinds of life: Vegetable life enjoyed by trees, shrubs, flowers, and fruits; Sensitive life possessed by insects and animals; Intellectual life held in common by Angels, who are pure spirits, and the soul of man.

God's Omnipotence seemed to make me a composite of all His creation. I enjoy life in common with the vegetable world; I share the animal life by the possession of my senses; I possess a rational life in common with the Angels. I am truly God's exclamation point at the end of His creation.

An Omnipotent God loves me!

Consideration:

This Attribute gives me great confidence and assurance. I realize that my Father is so powerful that nothing can oppose His Will, nothing is too difficult.

With a single word He can create, and He is magnificent in all He does. Absolutely nothing is impossible to Him. Everything and everyone I know has limitations—He alone is limitless.

He not only created everything out of nothing but without His sustaining Will all things would go back into the nothingness from which they came.

This realization gives me a feeling of security and stability. Everything and everyone is in His Hands, for without Him the sun would not warm me at noon or the moon give me light at night; fruit would not grow on trees or flowers bloom; water would never quench my thirst or food delight my palate; the smile of a child would never thrill me or the clasp of a neighbor's hand comfort my soul. Verily, His Power constantly works for my good to give me joy and happiness, for all things come to me through Him.

This consideration will be a great help if I am tempted to be proud because I will realize that everything I do I accomplish only because He lets me share His Power. Jesus reminded me of this in His reply when Pilate asked, "Are you refusing to speak to me? Surely you know I have power to release you and I have power to crucify you?" "You would have no power over me," replied Jesus, "if it had not been given you from above."

Since Scripture reminds me that both my qualifications and authority come from God, I will use them with humility, kindness, and gratitude, knowing I must render an account of my stewardship.

Prayer: O God and Father, You created all things from nothing; You sustain them without effort; You govern them without fatigue; You provide for all from Your abundance which never diminishes; I rest in Your Power knowing You have created me out of Love.

Scripture

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth

.... God said, "Let there be light, and there was light" ... . "Let there be a vault in the waters to divide the waters in two" .... "Let the waters under the heavens come together into a single mass, and let dry land appear" . . . "Let the earth produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and fruit trees with their seeds inside" .... "Let there be lights in the vault of Heaven to divide day from night" .... "Let the waters teem with living creatures, and let the birds fly above the earth within the vault" Let the earth produce every kind of living creature, cattle, reptiles, and every kind of wild beast" .... "Let us make man in Our own image—in the likeness of Ourselves" .... (Gen. 1:1-27).

GOODNESS

God is Good. He is the only Good, not because He possesses Goodness but because His very being is Infinite Goodness.

God communicates to me and my neighbor some of His Goodness. I must always remember this and never envy my neighbor, for every good we possess comes from God.

I draw from this one source of Goodness all the good I desire by ever uniting my will to His.

His Goodness rewards the desires my efforts have not accomplished.

Goodness belongs to God by nature and it cannot be diminished as it diffuses itself to His creatures. He is always infinitely Good.

All the evil in the world and in hell never lessens His Goodness. Though I reject His Love, His Goodness continues to seek me out until death.

His Goodness elevated me, a finite creature, to the heights of Divine Adoption. His Goodness gives me a reward for what His Grace accomplishes through me.

Everything He created is good, and His Goodness is so diffusive that the quantities, qualities, and dimensions of His creation stagger the mind. The variety of fruit, each with its own taste, size, and color; the variety of flowers, rocks, precious stones;—everything He created overflows in abundance.

His Goodness gives me music, friendship, love, joy, happiness, success, and all the other good things that cross my path to thrill my soul.

His Goodness saw my misery and sent His Son to redeem me, His Holy Spirit to sanctify me, and His Eucharist to be with me until the end of time.

His Goodness gives me reflections of Himself in the intellect of man, the immensity of the universe, the variety of creatures, and the beauty of the earth.

His Goodness is so magnificent that it draws good out of evil.

A Good God loves me.

Consideration:

It is often difficult for me to be good because I find it hard to love and goodness springs from love. It is the fruit of love and the effect of love. To love is to wish another well—the cause of that desire is love and the effect is Goodness.

Love is an interior disposition and is manifested by Goodness. God's love for me is not dormant but active. He constantly shows me that love in many ways, and my love must respond by an awareness of these manifestations and a humble gratitude.

My love for my neighbor, like God's love for me, must manifest itself by doing all in my power to obtain my neighbor's good.

My love must express itself not only by feeding the poor and visiting the sick, but by a spirit of gentleness in dealing with others, by a joyful attitude, by politeness with young and old alike, and by being thoughtful and concerned with the needs of others.

Prayer: Good God, penetrate my soul with Your Goodness, that I may radiate Your Love and concern to my neighbor. Give me all the—tight and strength I need to be a neighbor to everyone, and to do all I can to obtain the good my love desires for them.

Scripture

I say this to you: love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you: in this way you will be sons of Your Father in Heaven, for He causes His sun to rise on bad men as well as good, and His rain to fall on honest and dishonest men alike. For if you love those who love you, what right have you to claim any credit? Even the tax collectors do as much, do they not? And if you save your greetings for your brothers, are you doing anything exceptional? Even the pagans do as much, do they not? You must therefore be perfect (good) just as your Heavenly Father is perfect (good) (Matt. 5:43-48). Make no mistake about this, my dear brothers, it is all that is good, everything that is perfect, which is given us from above (Jas. 1:17).

GOD IS IMMUTABLE (Changeless)

God is Infinite in all His Attributes. There is nothing that can be added to them, and no matter how much He diffuses His perfections to His creatures, they are never diminished. There is no such thing as alteration, no shadow of a change." (Jas. 1:17).

His Will is changeless because He wills only what is good for me. Even when I offend Him, His Will always desires my good, His Love reaches out for a response, and His Mercy extends forgiveness.

God is Love and He cannot change. He loves me always, and that Love is Infinite.

God sees everything, past, present and future, as an overall picture ever before Him. He is ever exercising His infinite attributes in His creation—without ever diminishing from or adding to His perfections.

All things are seen in one glance of an Infinite God who never had a beginning and will never have an end. This all embracing, changeless glance is not static but ever active and working with the greatest vitality because it is perfect in all it accomplishes.

His yesterday and tomorrow are all wrapped in a today that knew no beginning and has no end.

God's life subsists by itself and does not depend upon anything outside itself, for all things derive their life and existence from Him.

His life is not subject to any progression because it is all perfect. There is no succession of knowledge in God for He knows all things and nothing can be added to His knowledge.

In God there is no growth in love for He is Infinite Love. He does not become more merciful as time goes on—He is Mercy itself.

The evil His creatures heap upon themselves and the offenses they give Him do not diminish His Goodness towards them but only make it gush forth like a torrent in the desert.

He does not become provident because of my needs. He is provident before my needs manifest themselves.

His wisdom reaches from end to end in His creation, not only to keep it in order but to keep it in existence.

An Immutable and Eternal God loves me.

Consideration:

I am limited in everything I do and I am in a state of constant change. My mind, body, ideas, likes and dislikes, tastes, and knowledge are all subject to numerous changes during my life. It is difficult for my mind to comprehend in even the smallest degree a Being whose nature is changeless.

The very mystery of the eternal and changeless nature of God gives me a feeling of security and stability.

My weakness and frailty fade into nothingness in the light of the realization that I am the beloved of the Eternal God.

His changeless nature finds its delight in giving me a participation in His Eternity by making my soul immortal, adopting me as a son, and through the merits of Jesus, promising me that I shall rise on the last day.

I can believe and put all my trust in my Immutable Father.

Prayer: O God, though moment succeeds moment in my life and these are filled with uncertainty and doubt, I find comfort in Your unchanging Love, Mercy, Providence, and Goodness. You are not satisfied that I am the recipient of these Attributes—You give them to me as my very own, as much as I desire to possess, in this life and for all eternity. Though I change often, give me serenity of soul that I may sail the stormy sea of life anchored to Your Immutable and Eternal Love.

Scripture

The Lord is the everlasting God who has created the ends of the earth. He shall not faint nor labor, neither is there any searching of His Wisdom (Is. 40:28).

Know: I, Yahweh, do not change (Mal. 3:6).

Aeons ago, You laid earth's foundation; the heavens are the work of Your hands; all will vanish, though You remain, all wear out like a garment; like clothes that need changing You will change them; but Yourself, You never change, and Your years are unending (Ps. 102).

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb. 13:6).

'He has imposed an order on the magnificent works of His Wisdom; He is from everlasting to everlasting (Ecc. 42:21).

Lasting to eternity, Your Word, Yahweh, is unchanging in the heavens; Your faithfulness lasts from age to age (Ps 119:89,90).

Omnipresence—God is Everywhere Immanence—God is in everything and

in me. Transcendence—God is above everything

OMNIPRESENCE

The most consoling attribute of God, next to His Love, is the reality of His Presence everywhere through His Essence, and His Presence in my soul through grace and the Eucharist.

Love demands the companionship of the beloved, and God is with me at all times.

God must sustain everything He creates—He communicates existence to all creation. This being true, He must be present when He operates and so, even in a sinner, God dwells in substance, else the sinner would cease to exist.

To see His Presence in nature, as His Power gives it life and beauty, is to be filled with awe at His Greatness.

My God is not satisfied that I see His Presence everywhere (Omnipresence), He has deigned to come and dwell in my very soul through Grace (Immanence).

IMMANENCE

All of God lives in me—He lives in me in a purely supernatural way—in the deepest recesses of my soul.

This Presence of God goes beyond just sustaining my soul—His Presence in me is a Presence of Love and Friendship.

My soul, in a state of grace, carries God within it. I know Him through Faith, I trust Him through Hope, and I possess Him through Love.

St. Paul tells me that God dwells in me as in a temple. This Presence raises me above my natural level to a supernatural level. It is the gift of all gifts—to have my Creator take up His abode in my soul. The Father lives in me, the Son lives in me, and the Holy Spirit lives in me.

His Power keeps me in existence, but His Indwelling goes beyond that and gives me the opportunity to live in Him and through Him.

Jesus said, "The Kingdom of God is within you" (Lk. 17:21),—this means I have only to look within my own soul to find Him.

Jesus promised that if I do His Father's Will, He and the Father will come and manifest Themselves to me (Jn. 14:21).

He offers me His intimate friendship and a life of peace and joy by living within the secret chamber of my soul.

His Presence within my soul is hidden because it is spiritual, and the fruits of that Presence have the power to transform me into a son of God.

The power of this Divine Indwelling can make me into a new person. It can slowly detach me from those faults and things in my life that weigh me down and keep me from reflecting Jesus.

St. Paul explained this beautifully when he said: ". . . He is not far from any of us, since it is in Him that we live, and move, and exist" (Acts 17:28).

The Presence of God in my soul through Grace places me on the level of a friend in my relationship with God. He is present as Father, as Friend, and as Guest. A deep awareness, through recalling this marvelous truth to mind, will give me all the strength and power necessary to rise above myself and live a more supernatural life—glorifying the Father by bearing fruit through the Son in the power of the Holy Spirit.

I can often go into the sanctuary of my soul, that secret place, and speak to Him as a friend speaks to a friend—Adore Him as Lord and Life-giver, Praise Him as the One who alone is Holy, Thank Him for raising me up from nothingness to a son of God, and make Reparation for my sins by loving repentance. I can do all this in the depths of my soul, alone with God, any time, anywhere, because He deigns to live in me.

I need not raise my eyes to heaven but only lower them to my heart. I need not raise my voice but only whisper an act of love. I need not look around me to seek Him, but only within me to find Him.

He is "nearer to me than breathing and closer than hands and feet." I am a living temple, in which God dwells, to manifest His perfections to my neighbor. I must often shut out the ramblings of my imagination, the inordinate desires of my senses, and the selfishness of my will, and enter into the interior of my soul where in the darkness is the light of faith, trust is the hope of things to come, and love is the possession of a power that makes me holy.

My soul is like a diamond that the trials and sufferings of life have cut into many facets. The light of God's Grace enters that diamond and reflects that beautiful light for all to behold.

The diamond and the Light are different in nature—one is finite and limited, the other infinite and unlimited. Nevertheless, the diamond and light together shine with such brilliance that they are thought to be all one. To look upon them is to see only light.

So it is that with God's indwelling in my soul, I become by Grace what Jesus is by nature,—a son of God.

All the beauty in the world fades away into ugliness in comparison with the magnificence of one degree of Grace—a little bit of God in me.

Jesus lived and died that I may participate in His Father's perfections. His Love and Goodness looked upon my misery before time began and decided that He wanted me with Him in His Heaven forever.

But how to elevate such a creature as I except to give me something I would never dream of or ever begin to merit? He would exert His Omnipotence and become weak, that I might be filled with His Immanence and become great.

He lives in me that I may reflect His very own life and perfections and glorify the Father whose eyes behold Jesus in my soul.

To keep that image clear and more reflective, He gives Himself to me in the Holy Eucharist as food for my soul. I must participate in His nature more and more every day if I am to bring forth the love of Jesus and be a son of the Father.

It is easy to understand a God being everywhere and creating everything by His Power and Wisdom. But it is beyond my comprehension that His Omnipotence did itself violence and became man just to be like me. His Immanence constrained itself in a little Host to be my food. His Infinite Love prepares my soul to be transformed into Him.

Only God could leave me and stay with me at the same time, His physical Presence ascended into heaven but His Immanence gives me His Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Holy Eucharist. Every time I receive this Sacrament, whose power is beyond my comprehension, I receive more of God. The pool of my soul becomes brighter and His Divine reflection more radiant.

He knew my faith would waver at times and I would need something tangible to speak to and gaze upon, so He gave me Himself in a miraculous way in the Holy Eucharist—as Friend when I'm in need, as Companion when I'm lonely, as Strength when I'm weak, as Mercy when I fail, as a source of Joy when I'm sad, as Peace in the midst of turmoil, and as a Power to help me press ahead with confidence for the struggle to come.

He has given me His Presence in Scripture—to guide me along the path of life, to direct me in the right way, to reveal to me His Attributes, His Son and His Spirit, to feed my soul with His Word, to encourage me when things go wrong, to show me His Will, to assure me of His forgiveness, to give me hope when all seems lost, to tell me how much He loves me, and to give me a glimpse of the Kingdom and the Glory to come.

God is present to me in another way, and of all the various ways he is present to me, perhaps this is the most difficult to understand,—it is the Presence of God in my neighbor.

It would be easy if everyone I met were Christlike, but this is not so, and yet, Jesus tells me that whatever I do to my neighbor I do to Him. The Presence of God in my neighbor is so real that He counts as done to Himself the things I do to my neighbor.

I must see His Presence in everyone. In the sinner, He dwells in Essence by the fact that He keeps him in existence. In Christians, He dwells through Grace. I cannot judge how God dwells in my neighbor for I judge only by appearances and God judges the heart.

One thing I must keep in mind—that I should treat my neighbor as I would treat God, because His Presence, either by Essence or by Grace, is Infinite and Holy, and my conduct should be determined by His image in the soul of my neighbor rather than my neighbor's limitations.

TRANSCENDENCE

As I begin to see His Presence around me in nature and the universe, in His Word, in my neighbor, in the Eucharist, and in myself, I must understand that although God is in everything He created,—everything He created is not God—He is above it all as Supreme Being.

Only His Son and His Spirit share His nature on an equal basis, and everything and everyone else are reflections of His attributes—created to give Him glory and diffuse His Goodness.

No matter how much I know about God, He transcends all my knowledge of Him. My knowledge of Him will never be comprehensive.

For all eternity I will continue to receive new lights and knowledge about Him, that will thrill my soul with awe and wonder.

No matter what my concept of His perfections,—His Mercy or Goodness—it all falls short of what He really is; I must use symbols in words, and pictures in images, to describe the transcendence that my mind cannot understand. My intellect will never be satisfied, it will never rest in my knowledge of God, for He transcends all images and words. He is infinite in all His perfections.

My idea of mercy is not His Mercy, because my ideas are of necessity limited, as I am limited. His Mercy is far above any human concept. If I could keep this in mind when I fall, I would never be discouraged or despair.

His Goodness is not my goodness, because my goodness goes just so far. His Goodness is endless, unlimited, pure, and absolute.

God will far transcend everything I know about Him and this will be so for all eternity.

It is an exhilarating thought to realize I will never exhaust the number of His attributes or their infinity. I am called to participate in these perfections in whatever degree I desire. In that eternal now I shall gaze upon Him in wonder, I shall be filled to overflowing with love, and I shall learn new and exciting mysteries, never before known, without ever exhausting the Source from which my beatitude springs.

Unlike earthly heroes, who always fall short of my ideals, God will eternally transcend all I could hope for. If I possessed all the knowledge of God amassed by all the great minds and saints in the world, it would be only a beginning of what remains to be learned.

What makes God, God, is the fact that He is beyond anything I can know about Him, and yet, He reveals Himself to me in a real way, a way in which I can participate in His very nature.

His Power accomplishes the impossible, and His Infinite Transcendence stoops down to me through His Goodness. He dwells in me through His Immanence, and transforms me into Jesus through His Spirit of Love.

An All-present, Immanent, and Transcendent God loves me.

Consideration:

I must make an effort to become more aware of God's Presence everywhere. I must see Him in all His nature and creation. There are so many vestiges of His Power and Being in everything around me but they will be lost as long as I am blind to their existence and beauty.

I can be so absorbed in my own problems and difficulties that the beauty and peace around me are lost in a maze of imaginary clouds that keep me in a tiny cramped world.

I must look beyond what is visible and see the invisible reality. My life must take on another dimension—a spiritual dimension—the ability to see God and His creation together and not separately.

The Presence of God in my own soul must be the object of my special attention. I must not permit the mystery of this Presence and my inability to understand how He lives in me, prevent me from reaping the fruit of this marvelous Presence. I will humbly turn within my soul to adore, thank, praise and love Him. The Holy Trinity lives in my soul, for the Father living in me continually generates His Son, and from the Father and Son together, proceeds the Holy Spirit. I must be emptied of myself by recalling often during the day, that all of Heaven lives in me.

This Presence in my neighbor will be an aid in treating him as I would treat God, but I will need strength to see God in everyone, and His Presence in the Eucharist will give me more of Jesus so I can be patient, kind, and forbearing.

When I see His Transcendence and the many different ways He is present to me, I realize that only an Infinite Love could have the power to come down to my level, surround me with omnipotence, raise me up and hold me in the arms of His Fatherly care.

Prayer: Lord and Father, Your Son Jesus gives me tangible proof of Your Presence in my soul by giving Himself to me in the Holy Eucharist. Through the power of Your Spirit's gifts, let that Presence bear fruit and give proof to my neighbor that Jesus is Lord.

Scripture

Where could I go to escape Your Spirit? Where could I flee from Your Presence? If I climb the heavens, You are there, there too, if I be in Sheol.

If I flew to the point of sunrise, or westward across the sea, Your hand would still be guiding me, Your right hand holding me. (Ps. 139:7-10)

*   *   *

I shall ask the Father and He will give you another Paraclete to be with you forever, the Spirit of Truth ... . you know Him because He is with you—He is in you.

On that day you will understand that I am in the Father, and you in Me and I in you (Jn. 14:17-21).

Make your home in Me as I make my home in you. As a branch cannot bear fruit all by itself but must remain part of the vine, neither can you unless you remain in Me (Jn. 15:3-5).

*   *   *

High over all nations, Yahweh!
His glory transcends the heavens!
Who is like Yahweh, our God?
Enthroned so high, He needs to stoop
to see sky and earth! (Ps. 113:4-6).

We could say much more and still fall short; to put it concisely "He is ALL".

Where shall we find sufficient power to glorify Him, since He is the Great One, above all His works, the awe-inspiring Lord, stupendously great, and wonderful in His Power? (Ecc. 43:27-29)

HIS TENDER JUSTICE

I must keep in mind that God's Justice is tempered with His Mercy. Man's justice is hard and exacting, but this is not so with God.

His Justice demands His Mercy—I am fortunate if man passes judgment on me with mercy, but God is Just because He is merciful and He is merciful because He is Just.

He knows of what I am made; He knows how difficult it is and how many obstacles prevent me from following Him at times; He knows the light and grace I have had and how many talents have been given me; He knows my circumstances and intelligence—and He makes His judgments in the light of perfect truth. He knows me better than I know myself, and His Justice takes all this into account.

St. Francis de Sales made the statement that he would rather be judged by God than by his own devoted mother.

Because my entire life is before Him, His Justice prevents Him from punishing me immediately after a fall. He patiently waits, heaping grace upon grace, reaching out and calling me to a higher life even though my weakness often disappoints Him.

He has given me free will and His Justice must let me decide and choose, even when that choice is not for my good. But the very Justice that gives me the freedom to make a wrong choice is covered with Mercy and brings good out of the evil my weak will may have brought upon me.

It is because God is Just that He is compassionate. He knows me so perfectly His Justice shows compassion when my neighbor, who sees only the exterior, is ready to condemn me. His Justice excuses me, corrects me, and patiently waits until my vacillating will unites itself to Him.

His Justice gives me everything I need to live and to attain my salvation. If life and society have deprived me of those rights and freedoms that are mine, then His Justice will compensate for them in the Kingdom.

Those who have been deprived of sight will see things in the Kingdom that others will never see.

I think of Helen Keller and realize how beautiful His Justice must have been in her regard. Though in this life she was deprived of sight, hearing, and speech, when she arrived in the Kingdom, the first face she saw was God's, the first voice she heard was God's; the first word she spoke with ease and clarity was "God".

As difficult as her life must have been, the sheer ecstatic joy at that moment and all succeeding moments, must have made all the suffering suddenly seem worth-while.

Jesus assured me of this when He gave me the Beatitudes. The Father's Justice will give the Kingdom to the poor in spirit and the persecuted; the pure in heart and the peacemakers will be called sons of God; the gentle shall inherit the land; those who mourn will be comforted; those who hunger and thirst will be filled; and the merciful will obtain mercy. Verily, His Justice will make all things right.

His Justice will be lenient on those to whom little is given, but it will require much of those to whom much has been given.

I must leave all judgment to Him. I see only the exterior of my neighbor, and although I think my neighbor would be better if he had more light, God knows just how much light he can accept and His Justice metes out to each one according to His All-wise and Loving Will.

God does not demand that the man given one talent produce ten more, though He would be glorified if he did—He is satisfied with the one talent bearing interest.

When I stray from the right path and His Justice calls for correction, it is always done out of love and for love. All that He permits or takes from me, He does only for my good—to prune me, and to show me His love and forgiveness.

Perhaps I can look at the rays of the sun again to obtain some idea of His Justice. The sun's rays have varied effects on everything they touch. It is the reaction of the object touched that creates the effect—the rays remain the same. Those rays harden some materials and soften others; some they solidify and others they melt. The rays remain the same, but how different are the effects.

God does not put one man in hell and another in heaven. His Justice desires that all men are saved, but as His love shines on all men, providing for their needs, directing their course,— each man responds in a different way. Some give love for love, others give thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold return, but there are others who refuse to love anyone except themselves. The constant rays of God's love shine on their souls but their pride rebels against any dependence upon anyone for love, except themselves. They are sufficient unto themselves and reject the warm rays of God's Love and Providence.

Since He has given these souls free will, His Justice demands they be permitted to choose or reject their only source of joy and love. So it is that some are saved and others are not. His love desires all to be saved, but His Justice will not interfere with their free will.

I am fortunate that His Mercy continues to hover over me, ever ready to forgive and forget if only I repent and throw myself in His all-provident arms.

A Tender and Just God loves me.

Consideration:

I will often think about His tender Justice and have confidence in His judgments. He understands me perfectly and I know I can trust Him to reward the good I have accomplished, and temper the corrections that my faults and sins deserve.

In return for His perfect Justice in my regard, I will be careful not to judge my neighbor since I can never be certain of his motives.

The evil actions of others will call forth in my soul, prayers for God's Mercy and Light. I will try to realize that I am capable of every evil and it is only God's Grace that protects me.

I will neither canonize the good nor condemn the bad, but let the Justice and Mercy of my loving Father render to each according to his works.

Prayer: Holy and Just God, I place myself in Your tender Mercy. You know me through and through and I rest content with the knowledge, that when I am judged it will be by You, who alone are Just, Holy, and Merciful.

Scripture

Offer Him no bribe—He will not accept it,
Do not put your faith in an unvirtuous sacrifice since the
Lord is a judge
Who is no respecter of personages.
He shows no respect of personages to the detriment of a
poor man.
He listens to the plea of the injured party,
He does not ignore the orphan's supplications, nor the widow's as she pours out her story ... . The humble man's prayer pierces the clouds
.... And the Lord will not be slow
.... nor will He be dilatory on their behalf
.... until He has repaid each as his deeds deserve and human actions as their intentions merit, until He has judged the case of His people and made them rejoice in His Mercy.
Mercy is welcome in time of trouble
like rain-clouds in time of drought.
(Eccles. 35:11-26)

OMNISCIENCE (God Knows All Things)

God knows all things in a most perfect way. He knows the thoughts of every angel and human being He ever created or will create—all in the same moment.

There is no past with God and no future. Everything is present to Him. He sees it all clearly, fully, and accurately.

At this moment He sees my entire life with all its desires and ambitions. He knows me as an individual and not as a part of a huge mass of humanity. He knows me so intimately that it would be impossible to know me any better—my secret aspirations are before Him and all those desires never expressed in words.

He also knows everything I would do under every possible circumstance and in every state in life. There is nothing that concerns me in any way of which he does not have full knowledge. His knowledge not only encompasses my actions in various circumstances, but my very thoughts. He knows me through and through and still He loves me. I wonder if I have any friend who would love me under those conditions.

God's love of me does not depend upon His knowing only my good qualities. His perfect knowledge of me exercises His Mercy and Goodness, and His Love for me is gratuitous. He loves me for myself alone—because He knows my needs so perfectly.

I must bring God's Omniscience to mind when I meditate upon the life of Christ. Every event in the Master's life is present to the Father. If I think of Jesus in the Garden of Olives, and I see Him in great distress of soul, the Father sees that event, as He sees me at this moment.

In the mind of God, His knowledge of that event and my presence now, are in one and the same moment. This being true, I can recall that scene, kneel before Him, and take His Hand in mine, look into His tear-filled eyes and tell Him I love Him.

Wonder of wonders! He saw me then as I am now and was comforted by my love.

I must keep this in mind when difficult situations come my way. I can go back and unite my pain and disappointment to His, and know that He was comforted then and is glorified now by my patience and joy in suffering.

It is assuring to realize that God's Infinite Knowledge of all His creation does not interfere with His personal relationship with me.

He knows me as if He knew no other, and this knowledge is not diminished because He knows millions and millions of other people.

I cannot think of more than one thing at a time, and if I try I end up confused and tired. It is an exhilarating thought to know that my God possesses all knowledge to the point that absolutely nothing can be added, and He does this without confusion or fatigue.

An All-knowing God loves me!

Consideration:

I will find joy in the realization that my Father knows everything there is to know. Jesus partook of this Infinite Knowledge, and yet He permitted Himself to be taught the carpenters' trade by one of His creatures. The Holy Spirit partakes of this Knowledge and yet He stoops to my capacity and gives me only as much as I can hold and render an account of.

This is a wonderful lesson for me. God, who knows all things, is so patient with my small amount of knowledge. He does not expect more than He has given, and He is patient even when that little is not used to capacity.

I must be careful never to make anyone feel inadequate or stupid in my presence, especially if their I.Q. is below my own. Neither must I make gods out of those intellectuals whose knowledge, however great, is only a particle of His.

Prayer: All-knowing Father, give me all the knowledge I need to be more like Jesus. Let Thy Spirit teach me how to be humble, kind, and patient, so that the reflection of Thy Son may grow brighter in my soul.

Scripture

Yahweh, You examine me and know me,
You know if I am standing or sitting, You read my thoughts from afar,
whether I walk or lie down, You are watching, You know every detail of my conduct.
The word is not even on my tongue,
Yahweh, before You know all about it;
Close behind and close in front You fence me round, shielding me with Your hand. Such knowledge is beyond my understanding, a height to which my mind cannot attain.
(Ps. 139:1-6)

He has fathomed the deep and the heart,
and seen into their devious ways;
for the Most High knows all the knowledge there is, and has observed the signs of the times.
He declares what is past and what will be, and uncovers the traces of hidden things. Not a thought escapes Him, not a single word is hidden from Him.
(Ecc. 42:18,20)

UNITY

In order to understand God in the smallest degree, I must look at Him in parts—I say, God is Love, God is Mercy, God is Providence, but in reality God is One—He is all of these things at one and the same time.

When He is Merciful, He is loving, provident, compassionate, and wise.

When He is Provident, He is merciful, loving, wise, and compassionate.

He is One in His Nature though He is Three in Persons. He is One in Essence and there is no one equal to Him.

I am very complex. I am made of a body and a soul. My body has many parts and each is distinct. My head is not my foot and my foot is not my arm.

My soul, though spiritual, is also complex. I have various powers and attributes. Memory, understanding, and will are powers of my soul. Compassion, kindness, and mercy are attributes I possess, but in none of these cases can I ever say, I am kindness or mercy, etc. I merely possess some degree of these attributes.

It is the same with the powers of my soul: my memory is not my will, and my will is not my understanding. Each is distinct, each exerts its own power, and each influences my life in a different way. None of these is the soul itself but merely faculties of the soul.

I can never say of myself, as I can of God, that I am love—No, I possess love. And so it is with the other attributes—compassion, mercy, providence, wisdom, etc.

God in His Infinite Goodness lets me share in His attributes, and the more

I resemble Jesus, the more these powers will be mine. They. will be my possession, and the source of these powers will always be God, for He lives in me.

Because I am dependent upon God for all good things, I am of necessity complex and composed of many parts, whereas God is absolutely One. He does not possess these attributes—He is these attributes. They constitute His very Being. He is not loving—He is Love. He is not provident—He is Providence. He is not wise—He is Wisdom.

These qualities, called attributes, are not in God or of God; they are God. His infinite perfections are His very substance.

It is difficult for my finite mind to comprehend, but the truth is that His love, justice, mercy, goodness, wisdom, etc., are just different names for His Essence—His Godhead.

God contains in one perfection all the perfections of His Being. All the perfections in every creature ever born are in God as one perfection. He is always the good, loving, beautiful, gracious, and wise Being.

I look at them separately because God affects my life in different ways. When I am in need, He is Provident, when I fall, He is Merciful, when I feel lonely, His Presence comforts me—but it is all one God whose Essence manifests Itself in many different ways to take care of me.

God is One and He shares Himself with me because His Son Jesus merited this privilege by His Life, Death, and Resurrection. He sent His own Spirit to dwell within me to raise me up to a participation in these marvelous attributes.

To be called to share in the very nature of God, through Grace, is truly the gift of all gifts. I can glorify God then by uniting my will to His and manifesting to my neighbor God's Providence, Love, Kindness, Compassion, and Mercy, as He lives in me.

In God there is no difference between what He is and what He does. His Infinite Intellect embraces all truth at one time.

He is utterly Simple and without complications. There can never be any error in God and no succession of thoughts, but only one thought and this thought comprehends everything.

His Will, too, is but one single act—always willing good, and only permitting evil in order to derive a greater good.

Imagine having a million oceans in one place. Though all are made up of tiny drops they form a single ocean. You cannot say the water is separate drops. The difference between this mass of water and God is that as He gives me more and more drops from the ocean of His Attributes He is never diminished. He is always the same but I can grow and grow. I can receive a drop of mercy and compassion, and behold, I also have love and goodness.

I need not be discouraged because the good qualities I possess are imperfect. My joy consists in His Perfections, not my own. My happiness lies in gazing at His absolute, unchanging perfections and not my ever-changing virtues. My Serenity is secure as I contemplate the deep, tranquil ocean of His Immensity.

LITANY OF THE DIVINE ATTRIBUTES

Divine Essence, who alone art holy, I bow before Your Being,
Response: Let me share Your Holiness.

Divine Unity and Simplicity, in whom there is no complexity,
Response: Make me simple and sincere.

Divine Eternity, without beginning and without end, giver of immortality,
Response: Let me spend my heaven with You.

Divine Goodness, diffusing Yourself in everyone,
Response: Make me good and kind.

Divine Wisdom, who designed the length and depth of creation,
Response: Make me wise enough to see Your form behind everything.

Divine Power, creating and sustaining all things with an act of Your Will,
Response: Give me strength to accomplish the things You want me to do.

Divine Providence, whose mantle covers every facet of my life with loving care,
Response: Give me perfect trust that I may work for the needs of today without concern for tomorrow.

Divine Knowledge from whom nothing is hidden and nothing is forgotten,
Response: Let me penetrate the mysteries of Your Being that I may share Your Life.

Divine Immanence, who penetrates all things and stoops to live in me,
Response: Let me radiate Your Son and glorify You through the Holy Spirit.

Divine Infinity, which embraces all possible perfections,
Response: Give me a share in Your perfections so that my neighbor may see You in me.

Divine Truth, in whom there is no shadow of deception,
Response: Make me truthful and honest in my dealings with others.

Divine Light, in whom all things are visible,
Response: Enlighten my soul that I may not live in darkness.

Divine Immensity, that fills and contains all things,
Response: Possess me through and through that I may be all things to all men.

Divine Mercy, infinite and without measure,
Response: Let me forgive and forget with love and compassion.

Divine Peace, ever tranquil and serene in the midst of turmoil,
Response: Let me maintain a quiet spirit and be strong enough to accept adversities with peace.

Divine Joy, who alone art the source of all happiness,
Response: Give me that joy that no man can take away from me.

Divine Justice, who judges everything in the light of truth through the eyes of mercy,
Response: Grant that I may not judge my neighbor's motives, but give him the benefit of the doubt.

Divine Immutability, ever the same and never changing,
Response: Make my vacillating will stronger that I may not stray from the path of holiness.

Divine Omnipresence, behind me, before me, and around me,
Response: Let me see Your Face in everything so that all Your creation may speak to me of Your beauty.

Divine Compassion, so patient and understanding,
Response: Let me be sympathetic with my neighbor's needs and give him my love as well as my deeds.

O great God, in whom all perfections are infinite and unfathomable, I adore, praise, glorify, and love You. My heart overflows with joy at the contemplation of Your Beauty and Splendor. I rejoice that You are so perfect and holy, and I desire to participate in Your perfections to the degree that will give you the most glory.

I desire to forget myself by the contemplation of Your Attributes, and I ask that You fill me with these perfections more and more each day, that I may radiate Your Son through Your Holy Spirit.

Amen.

_______

The author prays that all those who read this booklet will have a deeper awareness of the Father's Mercy, the Son's Love and the Spirit's Power.

Printed with the ecclesiastical approval of
JOSEPH G. VATH, D.D.
Bishop of Birmingham
Alabama, USA

©1977 Eternal Word Television Network, Inc.

Scripture Quotations taken from Jerusalem Bible unless otherwise indicated

 


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