Fifth Meditation

(The Dark Night, book I: chapter 6-7)

"He turned and said to Peter, 'Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle to me. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.' Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. What profit would there be for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life? Or what can one give in exchange for his life?" (10)

To Clutch The Cross

A stranger is the beginner,
To fasting and obedience;
Accustomed to her own pleasure
And ways, she craves independence.

Her will is tied to her own goals,
To comforts, and to vain esteems;
Avoiding what is best for souls --
The cross with its rough, heavy beams.

Love and the self are contrary;
Her will can only serve one cause.
Embracing love, she is wary --
The self will die with all its flaws.

To clutch the cross -- the choice is clear;
Her will must submit to His way.
His way is truth and life, not fear --
For Him, she chooses to obey.

She follows Him, clutching the cross:
Love is the gain; self is the loss.

May the Christ of Calvary lead us to embrace the cross -- our means of victory.

10. Matthew 16:23-26

(c) Paul Buis, 2004