We don’t claim to be a crack regiment, but the Battle Maidens of Cor Unum Abbey know where a giant keeps his forehead, and we have been practicing with smooth stones.
We realized that to say, “we will run to the battle” made us feel afraid, so we hitched up our skirts and tore through the lines of on-lookers. Let me explain.
We have seen all that everyone else has seen. Rage and murderous intent in our streets. More couples divorcing than marrying. Single parent families. Children devoted to destruction. Sexual promiscuity in the highest places. Abortion on demand. Fatherless sons and daughters taught almost from infancy to parade a lasciviousness that grows up with them. The new normal is horrifying.
The Scripture says that, because of lawlessness and wickedness, the love of many will grow cold. (Matthew 24:12) The nuns in this Abbey have decided that, before our souls ice over, we will train our hearts to love those lawless and those wicked with all that is within us.
We began praying for one boy who would walk past each day, dressed in black, face hooded from view, pants riding low beneath his underwear, and if ever we got a glimpse of him, his visage was mean and very evidently meant to frighten.
It is perfect love that casts out fear (1 John 4:18.) We applied it in prayer. He glanced our way and if looks could kill … well, they can’t, so we began to ask God’s best for him, wisdom, discernment, mercy, kindness, and beneficial friendships. He was the first; others followed. It did not take long for us to see that those most frightening were those most fearful.
That emboldened us, and we began to pray more and more diligently for those in high places who don’t show their fear with tattooed faces and skull-deco fashions. There are plenty of frightened and fearsome men and women who wear their power and their contempt the way our passerby wore a hoodie and a spiked cuff.
We ran to the battle, because the light dawned in our hearts and we saw that all we had to do was love more and better, and yes, that we could do. It cost us little more than time and a softening of our hearts When we see the fear behind the face masks, it changes everything. Spiritual darkness is paralyzing at any age, no matter whether one lives in the projects or a gated community. The “wages of sin is death” at every address, and the human soul mercifully knows this truth and trembles until the grace of salvation prevails. Yes, good is touted as evil and evil as good in this world, in this hour, but things are changing, turning as on the head of a pin.
That young man … before he moved, he had lost the hood, the black overcoat, and the frightened look in his eyes. God bless him, wherever he is. We love him. We love this country and those lost and dying in it. We will pray continually, specifically, and fervently. May God make America great again, a phrase we were using years before the current administration honored it … greater than ever we have been before. May God bless America, for Jesus’ sake. While our neighbors live in torment, we will pray and abide in hope, here in this monastery of the heart. Come, run with us …
Grafitti on a retaining wall, upper Manhattan
Anthony 22, by permission, Wikipedia