Splinters

  Episode Transcript  

One

What is the big deal about Divine Mercy?

Jesus gave St. Faustyna the mission to tell the world about the infinite Mercy of God and to establish Divine Mercy Sunday, the Day when the ocean of Mercy is available to everyone. But why does Jesus make such a big deal about his mercy? 

Everyone knows God is merciful. What’s the problem out there? Is the Problem that People think their sins are too big to be forgiven? Does everybody go around saying that they have sins which are so bad they don’t think they can ever be forgiven? 

Hardly. The world isn’t spending all its time racked with guilt over its sin and fearing hell. If you tell people, “God is so merciful, He’ll forgive even you,” they’ll say, “Yeah, I’m sure He will. I know He’s a loving God, and I’m not that bad of a person anyway, so I don’t have any trouble believing His mercy is sufficient to forgive my sins.”

We are not worried that God won’t be merciful. We are afraid He will and we don’t want it. 

Two

Splinters

When my kids were little and would get splinters in their hands or feet - what should I have done to be merciful to them? I should take out the splinters, right? That would be the merciful thing to do.

Did my children want my mercy? Did they come to me saying, “Merciful Father, in your great kindness, please take out our splinters?”

No, they did not. They ran in the other direction. They ran so fast you’d think I took splinters out with a chainsaw. Why? Did they like splinters? No, of course not. But it hurts to take the splinters out. The process is painful.

Now imagine someone whose entire body is covered with splinters. Big ones, small ones, all over. Like a human porcupine. That’s what our souls look like, covered in vices. And we can’t do anything, we can’t even move, without feeling those vices, those splinters. And we know they shouldn’t be there. And deep down we also know they make us miserable.

But hide from God because we know, if we go to Him, He’ll want to take all the splinters out. And that is precisely what we are afraid of.

Three

Hiding from God

Instead of going to God our Father and begging him for mercy, asking him to remove our sins and vices, our splinters, instead, we hide from Him and think to ourselves, “I have been living with these splinters so long, well, I am used to them anyway. Besides God, you will never be able to get them out of me. And if you did, well, I couldn’t stand it. It would be too painful.”

Why would it be so painful to remove our vices? Because they are embedded just like splinters.

Our vices are so embedded, they’ve gotten so under our skin that they seem part of us now. And if they are removed we would feel like part of us was dying, that we were dying. So, we don’t want his mercy, we don’t want the vices removed. 

See we have been relying on our pride and self-reliance and ability to control things, and our vain ambition has made us successful which gives us an identity and self-worth, and with our envy we were able to keep the competition down. And we have all these ways to cope with the feeling of being overwhelmed, and pain and boredom and loneliness by our greed, gluttony and lust. Well, if these were removed, then how would I live and who would I be?

So as soon as the Mercy of God tries to take out a splinter we scream, “Stop, you are killing me! So just back off, God.” 

And all the while, we can hear the Father’s voice, “Trust me. You will feel better without the splinters.”

But we don’t trust in the Mercy of God. 

Four

C.S. Lewis talks about God’s determination to remove all our sins, all our vices, all our splinters, “Dozens of people go to Him to be cured of some one particular sin which they are ashamed of (like lust or physical cowardice), or which is obviously spoiling daily life (like bad temper or drunkenness). Well, He will cure it all right: but He will not stop there. That may be all you asked; but if once you call Him in, He will give you the full treatment. That is why He warned people to ‘count the cost’ before becoming Christians. ‘Make no mistake,’ He says, ‘if you let me, I will make you perfect. The moment you put yourself in My hands, that is what you are in for. Nothing less than that. You have free will, and if you choose, you can push Me away. But if you do not push Me away, understand that I am going to see this job through. Whatever suffering it may cost you in your earthly life, whatever inconceivable purification it may cost you after death, whatever it costs Me, I will never rest, nor let you rest, until you are literally perfect – until my Father can say without reservation that He is well pleased with you…As He said He was well pleased with Me. This I can do and will do. But I will not do anything less.”

So, what should we do? What is our resolution?

Get an Image of Divine Mercy, especially the Kazimirowski version. Then say, “Jesus, I trust in You. Please remove all my splinters, all my vices. And Lord, You know I will kick and scream. I’ll beg you to stop. But please Jesus, come and live in me and help me accept the process so that I can be free from all my vices and live in the fullness of happiness and peace.” 

And every time you want to run from God, look at that image and say again, “Jesus, I trust in You!”

Five

Day Six of the Novena to Divine Mercy 

Jesus says to us, “Today bring to me the meek and humble souls and the souls of little children, and immerse them in My mercy.  These souls most closely resemble My Heart.  They strengthened Me during My bitter agony.  I saw them as earthly Angels, who would keep vigil at My altars.  I pour out upon them whole torrents of grace.  Only the humble soul is able to receive My grace.  I favor humble souls with My confidence.”  1220

We Respond, ”Most Merciful Jesus, You yourself have said, “Learn from Me for I am meek and humble of heart.”  Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart all meek and humble souls and the souls of little children.  These souls send all heaven into ecstasy and they are the heavenly Father’s favorites.  They are a sweet-smelling bouquet before the throne of God; God Himself takes delight in their fragrance.  These souls have a permanent abode in Your Most Compassionate Heart, O Jesus, and they unceasingly sing out a hymn of love and mercy.” 1221

“A truly gentle and humble soul Already here on earth the air of paradise breathes, And in the fragrance of her humble heart The Creator Himself delights.” 1222

“Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon meek and humble souls, and upon the souls of little children who are enfolded in the abode which is the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus.  These souls bear the closest resemblance to Your Son.  Their fragrance rises from the earth and reaches Your very throne.  Father of mercy and of all goodness, I beg You by the love You bear these souls and by the delight You take in them:  Bless the whole world, that all souls together may sing out the praises of your mercy for endless ages. Amen.” 1223 

Divine Mercy Chaplet

“I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth; 
and in Jesus Christ, His only Son Our Lord, 
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. 
He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; 
He ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God, the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. 
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy Catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting. 
Amen.”

Our Father

“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil. Amen.”

Hail Mary 

“Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb Jesus. 

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.”

On the Our Father beads pray:

“Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.”

On the Hail Mary beads, you will pray: 

“For the sake of His sorrowful Passion have mercy on us and on the whole world.” 

In conclusion, three times you will recite these words: 

“Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.”

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