The essence of our abandonment to divine providence is all about understanding the only opportunity we really have to respond to Him.
The Easter season recalls the 40 days that the Lord Jesus spent with the apostles after his Resurrection and the nine days of prayerful waiting for the coming of the Holy Spirit.
The Lord is Risen and that means something to us and to the twists and turns of our everyday lives.
Faith in the Resurrection challenges us to see the arrangements of divine providence here and now. The Resurrection reasserts that all things owe their nature, reality, and strength to the will of God. This profound truth is the heart of the biblical teaching on divine providence. God cares for creation. He also has a unique and intimate love for humanity, as the crown of his creation.
Realizing this love, manifested in the Risen Christ, we are invited every day to realize how God beautifully arranges all things so that we are provided for and given all the means necessary to live as the Lord Jesus lived, surrendering to divine Providence – wherever it takes us, even in the midst of suffering and heartache — and to generously follow the most excellent way of love.
The present moment, therefore, is the best opportunity to grow in our understanding of God’s goodness and care for us. This is the essence of our abandonment to divine providence.
Our abandonment, however terrifying that word might be to most of us, is an act of faith in God’s fatherly care for us. And so, we are called to be right here and right now!
This present moment, elevated by the grace and glory of the Resurrection, constantly gives us glimpses of and points us to eternity. And so, this moment is where God wants us, where he seeks to meet us, and he has moved heaven and earth for us to be at this appointed time and at this specific place with him.
This moment is where God wants us, where he seeks to meet us, and he has moved heaven and earth for us to be at this appointed time and at this specific place with him …
It doesn’t matter what ideas fill our minds or what our bodies feel, whether our minds are distracted and worried, or our bodies are suffering and dying. The will of God is always in the present moment and is the very life of the body and soul no matter what condition they are in. We are sustained—soul and body—by our abandonment and trust in God’s will.
As the Resurrection shines upon the present moment, faith presents the duties of our lives in a positive and sanctifying way. However mundane they may sometimes feel, our everyday duties and commitments are the ordinary means to holiness.
We are summoned to embrace these tasks, perform them virtuously, and find God in the midst of them. We are fed, strengthened, purified, enriched, and made holy through the faithful fulfillment of our duties in the present moment.
Faith nudges us through life. It flashes the glory of the Resurrection before us. It inspires us.
In developing the process of doing our part and abandoning ourselves to divine providence, we are offered the peace of the Risen Christ, as he repeated often to his apostles: “Peace be with you!”
Such an unsurpassable peace is the rich fruit of an abandonment to God. This peace confirms within us that there is nothing more beneficial to us than God’s will, and there is absolutely nothing that gives us more peace or does more to make us holy than obeying God’s will.
The process of abandonment to divine providence is both demanding and consoling. It is gentle yet firm toward us; one movement leads us to the other so that each of us knows how to abandon ourselves and dwell within God’s abundant providence.
… we see how tangible and accessible holiness is …
And so, we see how tangible and accessible holiness is and how we are all invited to cooperate with God. From these acts, we understand the promises of the Resurrection and are shown, in the splendor of its light, the beautiful and life-transforming sacramental power of the present moment.
By doing our part, fulfilling our duties, and seeing God’s presence in all things, we are presented with a Resurrection peace that is beyond any comprehension in this world.
Will we accept the call to surrender to divine providence? Will we focus on the Resurrection and seek the peace that only Jesus Christ can give us? This is the invitation of the Easter Season. This is the summons of the Risen Christ. God’s peace awaits!
Father Jeffrey Kirby, STD, is the Pastor of Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Indian Land, SC. He is the author of the recent book, Be Not Troubled: A Six-Day Personal Retreat with Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade.