Dear Children, in your life you have all experienced light and darkness. God gives to each person knowledge of good and evil. I am calling you to the light, which you have to carry to all people who are in darkness. From day to day, people who are in darkness come to your homes. Give them, dear children, the light.
This statement comes from Mary, the Mother of Jesus, to one of the young visionaries at Medjugorje in March of 1985.
I am not here attesting to the authenticity of the vision – I leave that to the Church. I simply find the statement beautiful and believe this request to be so necessary to our time. In our practice we see so many people who need love. They need the light and love of another and so often they only receive darkness in the forms of condemnation, misunderstanding, pride, hate, selfishness, deception, fear. We all need light and love for nourishment, to grow, become strong and produce fruit – fruit that is ripe and sweet. I know in my own life I struggle with bringing the light and love in so many situations. Other emotions take over or else a mindset sets in that says there is no use and nothing will work. I know this is true for others because I hear it so often in their hardened responses, I see it in their unwillingness to communicate and I feel it in their lack of empathy or compassion for another or their entrenchment in their own pain.
Real light and love is the cross of Christ and that is not the concept of love we want. We want to stay in the fantasy idea of love that makes us feel good. Indulging that fantasy brings more fantasy to which the real cannot compare. But real love is so much better because it actually produces fruit that ripens slowly, over time with much work, sacrifice, and pain. Carrying our own crosses in love is not easy but ultimately the fruit from all that work is perfect. It is pure joy…hope…peace…and an understanding of love that is in touch with our Father in Heaven. Bringing real love into your life changes everything from your marriage to your friendships to your work life to the way you deal with strangers. Real love brings total achievement in everything even things you believe are impossible.
Start with prayer – the kind of prayer that is done not out of compulsion for the cross you are carrying but out of love for the cross that God, in His wisdom, gifts to you. Then love those within your own family. Only then will you be able to love those who come your way. Do not underestimate the opportunity the family gives you to hone your skills to love. That is why Cary and I chose the family as the focus of our practice. The family is the playground we are given to learn to love – which is to accept, to draw boundaries, to pray for others, to sacrifice.
Deep within us we all know love because God created all out of love. Further, He gave us His Son Jesus to die on the cross to show us the way out of the darkness and into the light. Out of the cross comes the perfection of the resurrection which is total achievement and what we would otherwise believe is impossible. When Mary asks us to bring the light to those in darkness she is asking us to be perfect sons and daughters of our Father and to emulate the obedience of the Son and to allow the sacrifice of the Son to breathe within us.
Follow Mary’s request and honor your call to bring the light to those in darkness. You will be transformed in spirit and in life.