What is done at the altar, How does it relate to our lives? Christ always walked with people. He didn’t found a church, a school, a retreat center… He walked with his students, disciples and made himself available to people on the way. As Christians, we come to know Christ freely as our helping ‘guide’.
Who will be Lord of the human being? It is not a given. We are free to follow any guide – anywhere. We can be led astray. No animals can be so misled. The disciples recognized in Jesus the highest representation of what could be fulfilled as a human being. Our highest goal is to one day be conformed to his image.
What did the disciples see in Jesus? Someone in whom every word, every gesture flowed out of Love. Look at an acorn, then look at a mighty oak tree. Can you imagine looking at the acorn, that one day it will be an oak? What about the acorn tells you it is destined to be an oak tree? Do oak trees have funny little hats? Yet we as human beings will one day become as Christ. There is a great distance between us, but it is our future, just as the future of the oak is hidden in the acorn. But, we, unlike the acorn, have to choose to become an oak. We have to look towards Christ and begin the journey now of following Him.
So, How does the acorn become an oak? Christ answered us simply. “Take up your cross and follow me”. He asks, ‘Who do people say I am?” Peter says, “You are the Christ, the Messiah.” But Jesus rebukes him and says to Peter that he speaks out of God’s knowing, not his own. Then Jesus tells the disciples of his destiny and this time Peter begs him not to take this path. Jesus rebukes Peter again saying this time it is Satan who speaks through him. Jesus says, if anyone wants to be my disciple, they must be willing to perish for my sake. If he does so, he will live eternally. Take up your cross and follow me.
What is a cross? The cross was most obviously, the place where Jesus died. A circle with a cross inside it is, fittingly, the symbol of the earth. A cross is the image of earthly consciousness. It is composed of a vertical and horizontal line. The point where the two lines intersect is a single, contracted point. At that point, I am awake. The center point allows us to have a sense of self.
Death is the process by which earthly consciousness is overcome and the point expands. Self-consciousness becomes world/cosmic consciousness. Imagine on a board two circles, one inside the other. Two lines cross in the center circle forming a center point. Rays stream out from this center circle. Words written outside the circles: Father on the bottom, Son on the side, and Spirit on the top.
There is a place where God’s will does not rule. On earth, we cut the umbilical cord with God. On earth we can oppose the will of God. God leaves a space free from his will intentionally to allow free will to evolve. This is why we pray, Thy will be done because on earth, because it is not God’s will being done on earth, but our will.
At death, our earthly selfhood must end for us to rejoin the universe. Christ came to integrate earthly consciousness with heavenly consciousness because earthly consciousness had lost all connection to the Father. If we can walk the path of willingly dying, while we are alive on earth, we can attain unity with God – Thy will be done, in our will. This is overcoming our self-centeredness and can only be done through Christ for he exists in our sphere, and in the cosmic sphere. Before Golgotha, our sphere of becoming was cut off from God’s sphere of Grace.
Christians cross ourselves as we seek to regain access to the Father, Son and Spirit. By accepting the cross, we bring the power of dying to where we can be reborn.
In our sacrament we cross 3 places:
3rd eye – Father God be in us
Larynx – Son God create in us
Heart – Spirit God enlighten us
Christ overcame death. Death is the doorway to Cosmic life which Christ opened to us. Take up your cross! The disciples didn’t know what he was talking about -What he meant… The cross is where I will die. It is a burden only I can take up, carry – my life. The cross is our unique destiny/destination – where we will die and be born in spirit. At the Cross of Golgotha, Christ said, “It is finished, It is accomplished”. I have completed what I came here for. It is my body in which is woven all my inheritance of heaven, given into the womb of the earth.
Take up our cross daily. We can put it down at night when we sleep. But we must choose to take it up again each day. We can refuse, oppose our destiny, resent what life gives us. We can say; “I don’t remember signing up for this life!” How can we run away from our own life? We can watch tv, get caught up in addictions, bury ourselves in work… Not just the bad stuff but, even the good stuff can be hard. It can be challenging to have talents or wealth just as much as it’s hard to have poverty or illness.
Why is our cross so hard to bear? Our cross, our destiny, represents everything that we have not yet transformed, we have left unfinished, undone. In our normal consciousness, our sense of self is completely consumed with selfishness. Just review the content of your thinking, feeling and willing and how much is about you? Everything is about you, what you like, or don’t like, want, desire, hate, hope for, believe in, or oppose… It’s impossible to get out of ourselves, except by bringing Christ into us. That’s why in the Christian Community we say “Christ In Us”!
Christ takes the bread and he looks up to his father, Thanking Him, uniting his soul there with…. Gratitude is the way Christ unites his soul to the Ground of the universe – to the Father. How do we cultivate gratitude? Notice and appreciate the manifold gifts around us. Air, ground, water, food, friendship, sunlight, flowers – open your senses! Shift your experience to realize that everything we have or are is due to others… All is given to us. There is not anything that we have not been given freely by the divine world. Before the agony of his passing, Christ says Thank you to God…
I am what I am thanks to You, I have always received what I needed. My cross helps me to become who I am meant to become. What I need is trust in the cross, in the events of my life /world to transform me. Through the cross, Christ bears and orders the life of the whole world. Christ is coming towards us from the future. He IS our destiny. All of our life contains exactly the forces we need – if we take it up, to become Christ.
All we can say to our destiny is Yes or No. Can we take up our cross, our destiny? God bears and orders the life of the world so that when we refuse to trust life, we are rejecting God. We deny God when we begrudge our lives… Active surrender is where our will exists. Not my will, but Thy will be done. This is the only prayer we need – in every moment.
Fear blocks our destiny from coming to us. The angels cannot get past our fear, which is why we must pray constantly – Not my will, but thy will be done. When Christ says follow me – He is going to Golgotha, where death becomes a new birth. To walk with Christ we need: Trust, Gratitude, Faith, Surrender.
We must eradicate from the soul all fear and terror of what comes toward us out of the future. We must acquire serenity in all feelings and sensations about the future. We must look forward with absolute equanimity to all that may come, and we must think only that whatever comes is given to us by a world direction full of wisdom. This is what we have to learn in our times. To live out of pure trust in the ever present help of the spiritual world. Surely nothing else will do, if our courage is not to fail us. Let us properly discipline our will, and let us seek inner awakening every morning and every evening.