Someone recently gave me St. Faustina’s Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul, and I started reading it during Holy Week. I quickly became enthralled with this woman’s spiritual experiences and rise to sainthood. The torments of her soul, and the despair and weakness she felt in the midst of them. Her constant seeking out of mercy. The way God spoke to and inspired her. Her struggle to trust God. The love she had for the Lord and how she expressed it. Her desire and search for a confessor who would guide her in the complexities of the spiritual life and the confusing inspirations she experienced. The beautiful union she experienced with God after her torments passed.
I felt like I was living this saint’s story, and it made me feel a little less crazy, like the sufferings and trials I was experiencing are all part of the journey, especially the journey of a Bride of Christ. As she says in her diary, "The Bride must herself share in everything that is the Groom's." How this resonated.
The prayers she prayed felt like prayers I’ve said. The phrasing of how God spoke to her seemed so much like how God spoke to me. The torments and trials she experienced were described in such a way that they felt like the torments I experienced. The consistency with which she confessed and sought mercy, and how every little sin bothered her and made her feel far from God. Her spiritual sufferings and interior anguish. Her desire to do God’s will at any cost. The way she struggled to trust God and had to be reminded by the wisdom figures in her life. Her desire and struggle to find a confessor who understood all of the things she was going through.
It’s like God dropped this book in my lap at the right time in my life when I would feel a profound connection to her and her story.
More than anything, St. Faustina’s story gives me hope: That in the face of sin, our need for mercy, and the immensity of torments and trials we suffer through -- God is using all of this to draw us into closer union with His Sacred Heart so that we all can experience the beauty of His Divine Mercy.
I can only hope that someday after these years of torment and suffering pass and I have been sufficiently ‘tried in the fire’, I will experience the intimate, beautiful, and joyous union that she was able to have with the Lord here on earth -- which is described as utterly breathtaking in her diary.
Only now do I catch glimpses of it, but my heart burns and yearns for it and I know God put that desire in me to eventually fulfill it.
O Divine Mercy, bless us with a beautiful union to Your Most Sacred Heart. St Faustina, pray for us.