“This is the hour, O my Lord, which Thou hast caused to excel every other hour, and hast related to the choicest among Thy creatures. I beseech Thee, O my God, by Thy Self and by them, to ordain in the course of this year what shall exalt Thy loved ones. Do Thou, moreover, decree within this year what will enable the Daystar of Thy power to shine brightly above the horizon of Thy glory, and to illuminate by Thy sovereign might, the whole world.”
“If it be Thy pleasure, make me to grow as a tender herb in the meadows of Thy grace, that the gentle winds of Thy will may stir me up and bend me into conformity with Thy pleasure, in such wise that my movement and my stillness may be wholly directed by Thee.”
mauricio (haifa, israel) left: This past year has been full of blessings as well as tests. Having the bounty of living and serving full-time in Haifa, growing more in the Faith, losing loved ones, finding the woman I love and marring her last month. Ups and downs like these, during this time, made me reflect and turn towards God more than ever.
Throughout this Fast, I find the reflection has increased, being careful with my thoughts and actions is a work in progress and asking for forgiveness is essential. The love and gratitude to God, always humbling, especially while in the Shrine. Sharing it for the first time with my wife, extremely special and uplifting.
razi (sherman oaks, u.s.a.) right: We all want to get “high”. Since we were little we loved being thrown high in the air, or going as high as possible on the swing. The euphoric rush makes us feel alive, present, and joyous. We grow up and that feeling becomes more and more difficult to achieve. Often people turn to drugs, alcohol, or many other unhealthy addictions. For myself I unseal the “Choice Wine”, with the fast, the writings, prayer and meditation. I have found that that “high” is possible. This 19-day fast is one of the fruits of God’s gifts to all of us. What an evolutionary idea, getting high on the words of God! Being “so inebriated with the wine” of His manifold wisdom that we forsake our couches in our longing to celebrate His praise and extol His virtues. Human beings seek that sensation; here’s a way that’s not physically or psychologically damaging but rather spiritually enriching. This is why I love the fast for the intensity and power of it. How it brings my lens into focus, and makes my heart catch on fire with God’s love.