HOW TO MEDITATE ON THE PASSION OF OUR LORD.
Dear friends, the meditation of the Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ could be done not only during Holy Week, but also as a devotion every Friday or any day during the year for it brings with it a lot of spiritual benefits. It is one effective way of accompanying Our Lord and uniting ourselves with Him. Through the contemplation of His Passion, we could enter into his heart, rest in his wounds, and realize how much He had suffered for our sake and our salvation, and how much love He has for each one of us. It could also bring about an attitude of contrition and gratitude on our part, and at the same time a sincere resolution to rectify our life and reject the cause of His Passion and Death: our sins.
In this regard, Fray Luis de Granada gives us the following suggestions:
“There are five things we can reflect on when we think about the sacred Passion…
1) “First, WE CAN INCLINE OUR HEART TO SORROW AND REPENTANCE FOR OUR SINS; the Passion of our Lord helps us do this because it is evident that everything he suffered he suffered on account of sins, so that if there were no sins in the world, there would have been no need for such painful reparation. Therefore, sins — yours and mine, like everyone else’s — were the executioners who bound him and lashed him and crowned him with thorns and put him on the Cross. So you can see HOW RIGHT IT IS FOR YOU TO FEEL THE ENORMITY AND MALICE OF YOUR SINS, for it was these which really caused so much suffering, not because these sins required the Son of God to suffer but because divine justice chose to ask for such great atonement.”
2) FIX OUR ATTENTION TO HIS VIRTUES TO IMITATE HIM: “We have here excellent motives, not only TO ABHOR SIN BUT ALSO TO LOVE VIRTUES: we have the example of this Lord’s virtues, which so clearly shine out during his sacred Passion: we can follow these virtues and learn to imitate them, especially his great humility, gentleness and silence, as well as the other virtues, for this is one of the best and most effective ways of meditating on the sacred Passion —THE WAY OF IMITATION.”
3) FIX ATTENTION TO THE GREAT LOVE HE HAS FOR US: “At other times we should fix our attention on the great good the Lord does us here, reflecting on how much he loved us and how much he gave us and how much it cost him to do so. . . .”
4) FIX OUR ATTENTION TO HIS GREAT GOODNESS, MERCY, JUSTICE AND KINDNESS: “At other times it is good to focus our attention on knowledge of God, that is, to CONSIDER HIS GREAT GOODNESS, HIS MERCY, HIS JUSTICE, HIS KINDNESS, AND PARTICULARLY HIS ARDENT CHARITY, WHICH SHINES FORTH IN THE SACRED PASSION AS NOWHERE ELSE. For, just as it is a greater proof of love to suffer evils on behalf of one’s friend than to do good things for him, and God could do both…, it pleased his divine goodness to assume a nature which could suffer evils, very great evils, so that man could be quite convinced of God’s love and thereby be moved to love him who so loved man.
5) REFLECT ON THE WISDOM OF GOD TO ATONE FOR OUR SINS: “Finally, at other times one can reflect . . . on the wisdom of God in choosing this manner of atoning for mankind: that is, MAKING SATISFACTION FOR OUR SINS, INFLAMING OUR CHARITY, CURING OUR PRIDE, OUR GREED AND OUR LOVE OF COMFORT, AND INCLINING OUR SOULS TO THE VIRTUE OF HUMILITY…, ABHORRENCE OF SIN AND LOVE FOR THE CROSS.”
-Fray Luis de Granada, “Life of Jesus Christ,” 15.
By your help, we beseech you, Lord our God, may we walk eagerly in that same charity with which, out of love for the world, your Son handed himself over to death. – Opening prayer, 5th Sunday of Lent
Have a great week ahead!
See as well: Fridays: Meditation on the Passion of Our Lord in https://catholicsstrivingforholiness.org/fridays-meditation-of-the-passion-of-our-lord-jesus-christ/
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PHOTO SOURCE: Juan de Mesa, “Cristo de la Buena Muerte” (1602) scanned from “Pasión en Sevilla”, n. 75, March 2015, Venta exclusiva con ABC de Sevilla, p. 52.