Saturday, July 12, 2014

Review: Made For Love, Loved By God

Fr. Peter John Cameron wrote this book, I believe, as a result of much meditation on God’s love for us, and how He would desire us to love --- like Him.  I thought of ways to summarize or comment on his words and insights, but all I can do is provide some examples of his words --- words which often caused me to ponder, and pray:

  • Jesus knows how we can be:  like those people who madly rush around cleaning the house on the morning that the maid is coming.  We are ashamed to let others see our mess.  … The last thing God wants is for us to try to fix ourselves before allowing Him into our lives.
  • Nowhere in the Gospels does Jesus speak the words: “I love you,” … yet throughout the Lord’s public ministry people are convinced that Jesus loves them.  Why? 
  •  My friends are God’s gift to me in proof of His love for me. 
  •  (from a poem by St. Therese of Lisieux): I could find no creature who could always love me and never die … O Heart of Jesus, treasure of tenderness, … stay near me till the last night. 
  •  The moment we start to love, the specter of suffering arises.  Why?  Because to love you means I never want to lose you.  Losing you would bring on unimaginable suffering.   But the only way to avert the suffering of loss would be not to love you in the first place.  Not an option --- that’s even less bearable. … Pain is part of being human.  Anyone who really wanted to get rid of suffering would have to get rid of love before anything else. 
  •  The perfection of God the Father consists in His mercifully loving others who deserve love not at all.  … Is this possible for me?  Pope Benedict XVI answers yes! 
  •  Peace is the grace that blesses us with the facility to enter into a new and lasting friendship with others, especially those from whom we were formerly estranged. … How exactly do we “make peace”?  By engaging in intentional acts of charity.

Fr. Cameron concludes his book with a prayer of St. Catherine of Siena, which reads in part:
Eternal Goodness,
You want me to gaze into You
and see that You love me. …
So that I may love everyone
with the very same love….

What then shall I do
to come to such a vision?
I shall strip myself
of my stinking garment,
and by the light of my holy faith
I shall contemplate myself in You.
And I shall clothe myself in Your eternal love.

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