Spiritual Reflections of Fr John Brian

A web place for epistles, sermons, homilies, and other spiritual and pastoral reflections of Fr John Brian Paprock, including Sunday sermons from Holy Transfiguration Chapel in Madison Wisconsin and links to articles published on-line. All images are from the archives of Fr John Brian. Most of them are photographs taken by him. Permission to use any of the content of this blog needs to be requested - frjohnbrian@gmail.com

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

An Assurance of God's Love

Dear Ones,
 
I want to be more capable and more demonstrative of the love I have for you, but it seems that I have been too busy, too distracted, too distant, too limited to tell you over and over again (as many times as you need to hear it): You are LOVED.
 
Please be assured, or reassured, that you are loved; that God loves you and that I love you.
 
God loves you completely and absolutely and He is never too busy, too distracted, too distant, too limited. 
 
He loves you as He sees you - the way He created you: whole and perfect; unique and human; complete and yet becoming.
 
He loves you beyond and above any love we are humanly capable of giving.  I can assure of this because I have known His love and I have seen the power of its benevolent force in tragedy, pain, suffering and death.  I bear witness to that love in the created world around us and in the creativity of humanity.
 
And I, and unworthy recipient of this great love, have been given a gift beyond expectation - I can share this same love with you; with anyone; with everyone; with all of creation.  I say "unworthy" because I cannot claim to have done any deed worthy of so great a love as the Lord has bestowed upon me. I have failed at some of the simplest of requests made of me and my life - yet God still loves me in fullness, or rather, beyond fullness as there seems to be an endless amount to share with you.
 
So, if I have known you or only know your name; or if we have been comrades in this life in the travails of human pain or heroic moments of human triumph; or if we have only met through the electronic media afforded us in this time; whether you are near or on the other side of the planet - I say without doubt, You are LOVED!
 
Please, just breath that Truth in with your next few breaths - the very spirit of life is full of love. It can be seen in all created things. It can be heard in every sound. It can be felt in the fullness of your chest as you breath...
 
God created  you for this time and this place. The entire universe has made space for your existence. God loves you so much that He demonstrates His love by giving free will in your uniqueness, in your time, in your space. He, who is everywhere and at all times, has given you this gift of love.
 
If you have fallen from the wondrous purpose of your life, love will restore you.  If you have been injured by the bantering of wills, love will heal you.  If you have fallen prey to devilish deceptions or misguided manipulations, love will give you clarity and show you how to get untangled  from  the destructive forces of the evil one. 
 
This inner healing and restoration and clarity does not come directly from some outward and superficial miracle. It is through the love of God that you share that these miracles will begin to appear in your life, in your family and among your loved ones.  As you give love to others, you will become another witness to the abundance of all good things - not because you manipulated the universe by giving love and getting what you think you want - but because God is good.
 
The goodness of God is abundantly surrounding us continually.  It is not what is happening to you, but how you are dealing with it - with love or without love. Love makes all the difference. Breath it in with every breath. Seek to participate in it rather than separate yourself from it.  God loves YOU!
 
Perhaps you think cannot bring yourself to love because you have been hurt or maybe even worse than that has happened to you at the hands of trusted ones who were not deserving of trust and did not show love towards you.  Then you will need to start by loving God with all your heart. Open your heart first to God above, let Him fill you with the healing light of love. Do not be concerned about others - their time will come.  Once you have known God's love as I have (and as one who has known hurtful and selfish untrustworthy people I can say this truthfully), there will be more than enough love for everyone else - because God already loves you abundantly and He will continue to love you. Sometimes I'll admit, I am afraid of being rejected. Probably you are, too.  It is risky to love, to heal, to be with God.  I have grown to understand that those that reject a spiritual and healthy love incur the greater loss. 
 
I wish I could give you a hug, letting you know that one human can love another without selfishness, without intrigue, without an agenda.  I can't though, because my arms are too short. But God, who as an infant was held by loving arms  that nurtured and protected Him, knows how important it is for us to be held in loving arms.
 
And, my dear ones, God always has room for you to be held.  And He will hold you until the sobbing ebbs; until the empty spaces are filled; until the pain and suffering no longer torment you.  He will send His angels to guard you under their wings if you will dwell with Him in His love.  
 
God loves YOU!  and, in my weak human existence filled with the wondrous love of God, I love you, too. 
 
 
 
pray for me, a servant
 
Fr John Brian
 
Holy Transfiguration Orthodox Mission Parish
621 N Sherman Avenue,  Suite B3, Madison, Wisconsin
Sundays 9:30 am ~ 608.242.4244
Spiritual Reflections: http://frjohbrian.blogspot.com/
A Little Spiritual Help: http://littlespiritualhelp.blogspot.com/ 
The Cross of the East: http://easterncross.blogspot.com/
o HEALING LIFE o DEEPENING FAITH
o ENRICHING PRACTICE o REFRESHING SPIRIT

 

Books by Fr John Brian available through Holy Transfiguration Publications

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