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  • Sarah Raad

Suddenly

Suddenly, through Grace and no merit of my own, I am His… GOD, please do with me what You will!

Disputa del Sacramento (Rafael)

One thing I have discovered, almost by accident, is the great and glorious GOODNESS of GOD!


Although I have always been taught that God is GOOD and God is LOVE, it is one thing to understand this with my reason, and quite another to feel this with my soul…


God is not called Good using the word good as an adjective to describe an attribute of a being. He IS GOOD. When we call God GOOD, we use the word as a NOUN, not an adjective. This means it is not simply one way to see God, it is THE way to see Him. God is GOOD just as I am woman. It is an irrefutable fact…


In the same way we say that God is LOVE. Here, too, we use the word LOVE as a noun, not an adjective, and in the same way we know that God is LOVE just as I am woman. It is an irrefutable fact…


I have been praying over the last few days very much for people who for various tragic reasons are struggling to see God’s goodness in their lives... There are mothers and fathers who grieve. There are children and young people who are sick or have special needs. There are the elderly and infirm who are isolated. There are families subjected to violence, abuse and addiction. There are people contemplating the ultimate sin of despair – suicide – through sheer are utter hopelessness.


In some of my prayers, I prayed for someone who is very dear to my heart who was overwhelmed by the problems in her life.


Now, I am a pushy person – very pushy indeed. But though my written words often reflect thought and care, my spoken ones tend to land me in all sorts of trouble.


This, if nothing else, is proof, that “the Mighty One has done great things for me” (Luke 1:49) and works through my feeble mind to communicate what He desires to speak through my written words – because I can rarely get the same message across through my verbal words.


While I prayed for this dear person, I took extra special care not to speak about this matter that required the push. I bit my tongue – and how hard that was to do for a pushy girl like me! But I bit it and shut my mouth…


And I prayed. And I prayed. And I prayed.

Often when we pray, we do not actually see the answer to our prayers. The prayer itself and our trust in God should be enough for us, and yet, sometimes, just sometimes, we catch a glimpse of Heaven…

Saint Therese of the Infant Jesus once prayed for the conversion of a man who was to be executed for murder. She and one of her older sisters prayed very much for this man’s conversion. While they prayed, they asked God if He would please condescend to favour them with a sign that their prayers had been heard; however they submitted to His Holy Will in the matter and accepted that they might never know if their prayers had been answered. All the while the two little nuns prayed, the man publicly refused to confess his sins or see a priest prior to his execution. He continued to refuse, and those little Carmelite nuns did not despair. They did not give up. They simply continued to pray. And then, came the day of his execution. On that day, that criminal and murderer mounted the scaffold, and just as the executioner placed the noose over his neck, he relented and asked to see a priest of confess his sins. Before he was executed he confessed, repented and prayed.


When this account was printed in a newspaper, those two little nuns were overjoyed by this condescension of their Beloved, who had so suddenly and effortlessly given them a sign of His Grace at work in that soul…


It moved Saint Therese so beautifully that she wrote about the even years later in her autobiography, “The Story of a Soul”.


It was the same way with my intention over the last few days. Though I prayed hopefully, I held no hope in a human solution to this problem – it was simply one of those things where we were going to agree to disagree and I was expecting that to continue to be the state of affairs for the foreseeable future…


And yet, suddenly, without warning, I saw evidence of the answer to my prayers… In that sudden moment, I caught a glimpse of Heaven.


It was sudden, most unexpected – so unexpected in fact, that I almost did not recognise it as it sat there staring me in my face – the answer to my prayers sat in a nondescript location as though it had always been that way, a little piece of Heaven.


If it were possible for me to explain my joy at suddenly stumbling over this evidence of God’s infinite condescension, I am sure that we would all faint from the sheer magnitude of this joy…


For seeing this evidence of God’s goodness, I was overcome – completely overcome – by the wonder of the mercy and the glory and the generosity of my God.


Oh my God – how much you give to me… What could I ever give you in return? How could I ever repay you?


You ask me to be your child – I submit myself to You as Your slave…


Please do with me what You will, for all of a sudden – through Grace and Your infinite mercy and no merit of my own – I am Yours…


And in that servitude, my Lord and my God, I shall hold a small glimpse of Heaven inside my soul…


For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.

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