(Little Catechism of the Life of Prayer,
"Mary kept all these things, reflecting on
them in her heart." (Luke 2.19)
Cherishing The Word
A mental sketch behind closed eyes,
May help the mind focus in prayer;
Lest it wander or fanaticize,
Or drift aimlessly unaware.
The mind ponders, discursively,
The text, as words are etched within;
Assisted by its imagery,
And led by the Spirit therein.
The heart maintains a loving gaze,
Upon the Indwelling Divine,
With gratitude welling to praise --
A bloom basking in bright sunshine.
The heart treasures the precious word:
Plumbing depths of its mystery,
Sprouting the seed as it is stirred
Rooting it in its history.
The cherished Word spreads its roots
Nurtured with love in hearts that keep.
"It is called recollection because the soul
collects together all the faculties and enters
within itself to be with its God. Its Divine
Master comes more speedily to teach it, and
to grant it the Prayer of Quiet, than in
any other way. For, hidden there within itself,
it can think about the Passion, and picture
the Son, and offer Him to the Father, without
wearying the mind by going to seek Him on
Mount Calvary, or in the Garden, or at the
Column. Those who are able to shut themselves
up in this way within this little Heaven
of the soul, wherein dwells the Maker of
Heaven and earth, and who have formed the
habit of looking at nothing and staying in
no place which will distract these outward
senses, may be sure that they are walking
on an excellent road, and will come without
fail to drink of the water of the fountain,
for they will journey a long way in a short
time." (St. Teresa of Jesus, Way of Perfection,
Holy Spirit, help my heart to cherish
Word of God in the depths of my being,
nurture it with love, and to ponder
a loving gaze that penetrates the depths
of its mystery. Amen.
(c) Paul Buis, 2007