Father Ignatius sat in the empty church right up front by Our Lady’s statue. He watched for a while the votive candles burning at her feet and then started his Rosary.
Suddenly, out of nowhere, these words came whirling fast into his head, totally uncontrollable and spontaneous, yet as clear as if they were spoken to him there and then.
“How shall I pray, Lord?” said the words in Father Ignatius’ head.
“Shall I beg over and over again for You to hear me? Is that what You want of me?
“Shall I plead for ever like the widow to the judge until she was heard?
“How do You want me to see You? As an over-powerful ruler demanding His own way?
“How do You want me to love You? As one loves a monster, with immense fear lest I arouse your anger and wrath?
“Shall I fear You for ever and cower at the thought of your fury?”
Father Ignatius stopped praying and made the sign of the Cross. He took a deep breath … and yet the words continued in his mind … somehow gentler now … somehow softer …
“Love me as a child … with no fear and no dread.
“Trust me as a child trusts his parents when they give him food and drink.
“A child never questions whether the food is good to eat … he takes it in trust and asks for more.
“He never doubts when led by his parents … he follows eagerly holding hands along the way.
“Love me as a child … and I’ll treat you with love and compassion.
“Ask me as a child … and I’ll give you what’s good for you in good time.
“Trust me as a child … and I’ll show you the way …
“No matter how difficult your journey ahead, I’ll always be there … guiding you into eternity … with Me.”
The words suddenly stopped as quickly as they’d started. Yet their message remained with the priest for a long time.
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