April 8, 2012: Easter
April 8, 2012 § Leave a comment
On Sundays, this blog has featured selections from Thomas a Kempis’ work, The Imitation of Christ. These works have been selected with Lenten themes in mind, such as fasting, prayer, and service. However, today we celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! His resurrection has great implications for us as followers of Christ; let this selection speak to you accordingly.
The Voice of Christ
As I offered Myself willingly to God the Father for your sins with hands outstretched and body naked on the cross, so that nothing remained in Me that had not become a complete sacrifice to appease the divine wrath, so ought you be willing to offer yourself to Me day by day…as a pure and holy oblation, together with all your faculties and affections, with as much inward devotion as you can.
What more do I ask than that you give yourself entirely to Me? I care not for anything else you may give Me, for I seek not your gift but you. Just as it would not be enough for you to have everything if you did not have Me, so whatever you give cannot please Me if you do not give yourself.
Offer yourself to me, therefore, and giveyourself entirely for God – your offering will be accepted. Behold, I offered myself wholly to the Father for you, I even gave My whole Body and Blood for food that I might be all yours, and you Mine forever.
But if you rely upon self, and do not offer your free will to Mine, your offering will be incomplete and the union between us imperfect. Hence, if you desire to attain grace and freedom of heart, let the free offering of yourself into the hands of God precede your every action. This is why so few are inwardly free and enlightened – they know not how to renounce themselves entirely.
My word stands: “Everyone of you that doth not renounce all that he posseseth, cannot be My disciple.” (Luke 14.33)
If, therefore, you wish to be My disciple, offer yourself to me with all your heart.
Lord Christ, I hear your words of challenge. As we celebrate your resurrection today, let us celebrate our own resurrection that is found in you. In our lives, bring about greater service, complete devotion, and true, loving relationship with you. Amen.
He is risen!
Thomas a Kempis, The Imitation of Christ: “The Offering of Christ on the Cross; Our Offering.” Translated by Aloysius Croft and Harold Bolton. Peabody: Hendrickson, 2004.