God the Father, Our Lord Jesus Christ

Part 1

God the Father, Our Lord Jesus Christ

&

Our Lady of Emmitsburg

Have taken the time to share much with humanity!

 

Will you take the Time

to

Ponder?

(Compiled by Michael T. Sullivan, MD)

 

“Let the one who is wise heed these things

and ponder the loving deeds of the Lord.”

(Ps 107: 43, NIV)

 

Part 1:                  Introduction

                             Opening Remarks from Heaven

                             The Holy Spirit

                             Understanding

                             God’s Love

 

Part 2:                  The Life of Jesus through Mary

                            

Part 3:                  Suffering

                             Prayer and Discernment

                             Humility and Holiness

                             The Blessed Sacrament

 

Part 4:                  The Prophecy of Our Lady of Emmitsburg

                             Her Triumph

                             The Center of Her Immaculate Heart

 

Part 5:                  Contemplation

                             The Closing

Part 1

Introduction

“…The mystery hidden from ages and from generations past, 

but now it has been manifested to His holy ones.” 

(Col 1:26)

 

Throughout life, and certainly in Sacred Scripture, we are often asked to consider ideas or proposals, to make decisions to accept or reject or to tolerate things that we do not yet fully understand, or that we could never understand within the restrictions of our human nature.  Often there is a sense of mystery involved.  This is best attempted with the help of the Holy Spirit, and at times may even involve a supernatural element of contemplation which only God can grant.  So to better understand what has been shared, it would do us well to establish some definitions.

 

The Webster’s Dictionary defines the act to Ponder as:  “to weigh in the mind; to reflect on or consider, especially quietly, soberly and deeply, so as to understand more deeply.”  This entire aspect of understanding has both natural and supernatural elements.  Through our finite human intellect, man has the capacity to perceive the meaning of or comprehend many things.  However, the infused Gift of Understanding from the Holy Spirit carries a much deeper power and potential to ponder and comprehend.

 

In the Catholic Dictionary (Catholic Reference) Understanding is defined as “the infused gift of the Holy Spirit given to the mind for grasping revealed truths easily and profoundly.”  It differs from faith because it gives insight into the meaning of what a person believes; whereas faith, as such, merely assents to what God has revealed.  This gift produces three principal effects in those who possess it.  They are enabled to penetrate to the very core of revealed truths, without ever fully understanding their meaning; they are confirmed in their belief by acquiring great certitude in the revealed Word of God; and they are brought to the knowledge of a greater number of truths by drawing numerous conclusions from revealed principles. 

 

This now brings into play the fact that there are many mysteries in both the physical and spiritual realms.  The Catholic Online Dictionary defines mystery as “a divinely revealed truth whose very possibility cannot be rationally conceived before it is revealed, and, after revelation, whose inner essence cannot be fully understood by the finite mind.”  Nevertheless, though incomprehensible, mysteries are intelligible.  One of the primary duties of a believer is, through prayer, study and experience, to grow in faith, i.e., to develop an understanding of what God has revealed.

 

Throughout these Words from God the Father, the Lessons from Our Lord Jesus Christ and the Messages from Our Lady of Emmitsburg given to the world through Gianna Talone Sullivan , there are times when it seems that the words “ponder” and “contemplate” are used almost interchangeably; however, at other times, clearly there seems to be the desire of Our Lord and Our Lady to instruct us on some of the aspects of contemplative prayer, which will be considered separately.

 

Contemplation (New Catholic Dictionary) is “the state in which the mind is elevated to God and Divine things, joined with an admiring and loving intuition of these.”  Mystical contemplation is Divine and effective; it enlightens the intellect, and inflames the will in a special manner, and above the human way of acquiring knowledge by reasoning and inference.

 

Opening Remarks from Heaven

“This is My beloved Son. 

Listen to Him!” 

(Mk 9:7)

 

In this 5 part series entitled “Ponder,” there is much to be shared and reviewed by the Holy Trinity and Our Lady of Emmitsburg; however, Our Lady, as the loving Mother she is, always respects our human free will as she tries unendingly to direct all her children back to God: 

 

“My little ones, no one has to believe!  It has even been written, ‘Let things be.  If it is not from God, it will destroy itself.  But if it is from God, then you may find yourselves fighting against God Himself.’  (Acts 5:38-39)  No one has to take from within my Heart the precious children whom I give to them.  No one has to ponder the words I am blessed to deliver to you.  No one has to work fervently and joyfully, giving the gifts of God’s Mercy to others.  No one has to do any of these things if they desire not to fulfill what God has planned.  However, no one should mock the Works of Mercy or uncharitably judge one another.” (Private OLOE, Aug. 6, 2005)

 

“There is confusion at so many different levels, and very many who desire not to pay attention to my words.  It is not an easy walk, and yet you are still looking for me to outline the Way, the direction that my Son and I desire you to go.  Be patient and persevere, for all good will come from this! Imagine if there were one less than you, then there would be one less to glorify God and one more thorn in my Heart for the lack of love and devotion and adoration and praise given to my Son....Continue to persevere, to ponder, to unite and to be holy.”   (Private OLOE, Nov. 16, 2006)

 

“Remember to pace yourselves.  Take things one at a time.  It is not necessary to do everything at once.  Go slow and ponder.  Take your time.  Otherwise, you can get caught up in trying to do too much at once.  It is good to pace yourselves so that you are free in Jesus and can love Him and pray to Him; and He can live within you and be the Light through you to all who are around you.”  (Private OLOE, Dec. 27, 2006)

 

“I understand that my words will need tremendous contemplation as to the outcomes and Truth as they unfold.  For no human can truly understand the depth and breadth of their meaning.”  (Private OLOE. Feb, 21, 2007)

 

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life

and what you will eat, or about your body and what you will wear.

For life is more than food and the body more than clothing….

O you of little faith….Your Father knows that you need them..

Instead, seek His Kingdom,

and these other things will be given you besides.

Do not be afraid any longer, little flock,

for your Father is pleased to give you the Kingdom….”

(Lk 12, 22-32)

 

 

In His opening remarks, Our Lord in His Lessons contrasts the wonder of His Father’s Almighty power and Love with our littleness, our weaknesses and our dependence on Him: 

 

“My Father instills in you Love.  His goodness draws your will to love.  He draws your intellect to ponder Him in contemplation….You could not love if the Father did not will it….Therefore, in contemplation you gain admiration and devotion to His Love….His works of Love are not founded only in prayer and admiration, but in deeds….If He draws you to Love and you keep it to yourself, it will die….It is necessary to realize that your weaknesses and imperfections are not driven away, because they are the fuel to sprouting the fruit of humility and chasing the Love of the Father.  In your weaknesses you remember you are nothing without Love, and it is the Father who deepens Love in you.”  (JOM, Vol V, #3, Dec. 2, 1994)

 

“Have you ever pondered the wondrous works of God?...He desires you to be His glorious people, yet He has no need for you.  He has made you little less than a god because of His Love for you.  You merit nothing from the works of your own hands….He gives life and brings death.  He brings healing to many, and He inflicts injury on many. He decrees what is necessary to bring the soul to perfection in His Love….In the Truth of His Love, He confounds the devil and destroys his lie so His people can follow the path to His gates of Heaven….Your safety and security rests in God alone….He awaits your love.”  (JOM, Vol V, #9, Mar. 20, 1995)

 

 

The Holy Spirit

“But when He comes, the Spirit of Truth,

He will guide you to all Truth. He will not speak on His own,

but He will speak what He hears,

and will declare to you the things that are coming. 

He will glorify Me,

because He will take from what is Mine to declare it to you. 

Everything that the Father has is Mine….” 

(Jn 16: 13-15)

 

The role of the Holy Spirit within us is central to our level of true understanding; yet, the Holy Spirit can reside only in those souls who are in the state of grace.  As we look around our world, as well as even our own families and households, it would seem that the state of grace cannot be taken for granted.  

 

“Allow the Holy Spirit to grace you and act in you.  Have confidence that whatever happens will benefit all souls.  You will not fully understand how the Holy Spirit works in you and for what purpose, until you reach the highest level of abandoning yourself to God.  In order to receive My grace, you must surrender.  Allow my grace to replace everything in your life on which you rely heavily….Be gentle on yourselves and keep surrendering.  I will grace you and protect you as you grow in love.”  (JOM, Vol IV, #89, Sept. 15, 1992)

 

The gift of loving oneself, according to Our Lady of Emmitsburg, is a prerequisite to allowing the Holy Spirit to act within us, and ultimately direct and guide each of us to the Truth and to God’s Divine Will. This journey involves both our asking and our gratitude for God’s response as well as the never ending hope that God will change the mediocre lives of his ordinary children into the grace-filled eternal life with Him:

 

…You must love yourself…..To love yourself is also a great gift and is most necessary. ….The Holy Spirit will guide you and teach you.  The Holy Spirit will lead you.  But in moments of difficulty you have to be very prayerful and content within the spiritual component of your soul; and your eyes must be the Eyes of Jesus so that you can listen and be resigned in obedience to all that God is asking of you……If you do not understand what I am saying, then pray that you will understand.  If you have tried and feel that you have not been answered, it is not that you have not been answered; but it’s because God is working within you to do wondrous works and to bring you to a level of greater contemplation and enlightenment through the Holy Spirit.”  (Private OLOE, Sept. 16, 2007)

 

“Children, always ponder in your hearts and be grateful to God for His good works, and ponder His Divine Will.  Each one of you is different, but in gratitude always ask for the Holy Spirit to continuously guide you and to enlighten you so that you may know the Truth.”  (Private OLOE, July 19, 2009)

 

“Hope is an infused grace which you need to live….What hope is there in this life for the person without God?  Death becomes a limit which puts an end to a mediocre life. But the person who hopes in my Son is receptive of the goodness and Love which He gives….Deep faith and hope are necessary to understand what is beyond the understanding of ordinary people.”  (Public OLOE, Sept. 19, 1996)

 

“For whatever was written previously was written for our instruction,

that by endurance and by the encouragement of the Scriptures

we might have hope.”

(Rom 15:4)

 

Understanding

“Rejoice in the Lord always….Have no anxiety at all,

but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving,

make your requests known to God. 

Then the peace of God, that surpasses all understanding,

 will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” 

(Phil 4:4-7)

 

Due to the inherent weaknesses and restrictions our human nature places on our intellect, mankind  has so often demonstrated the pattern of not seeking what is not understood.  This necessitates the gift of Faith, which is not only freely given by God, but which has to be continuously nurtured throughout one’s life if it is to be fruitful.   Our Lord in His Lessons teaches us that this attachment to our own human understanding poses one of our greatest obstacles to personal holiness, and the surrendering of this attachment to understanding one of our most difficult to accomplish, even with God’s grace:

 

“My people do not perceive Me as living as they live.  They do not will My Presence to live in them.  What their minds cannot conceive intellectually, they can neither understand nor accept….How My people restrict themselves by limiting, with their minds and hearts, what is attainable!  What man does not understand with his mind, he does not seek.  If man does not understand God, he will not seek Him.  That is why I always spoke in parables.  Man could not understand the Truth of My words and would have only accepted what he wanted to hear, had I not spoken in parables. Even now, in these Lessons, few will grasp the total Truth and seek My Father’s Kingdom.”  (JOM, Vol II, #17, Nov. 1, 1989)

 

“My people are so afraid.  They do not understand. Mankind cannot understand the fullness of My power….In order for my work to be done through them, it is necessary that they submit totally to me without understanding through human reason.  If they would give themselves to Me as I have given Myself to them, they would be given the knowledge to understand what they would need to understand in accordance to My Father’s Will.  It once again reflects faith….Submit understanding to Me, and you will gain the light of knowledge profitable to you.  Faith is required of My people.  They attempt to understand the deep mysteries of My Father and search for unattainable things….Caution is requested that they do not search for incomprehensible mysteries which will only deceive them.”  (JOM, Vol III, #5, June 4, 1990)

 

“It is faith in God that permits you to trust.  Faith is a grace which is given to My people by the Holy Spirit.  Faith, however, is not practiced in the fervor of love.  Why then do you limit your opportunity to grow and attain great achievements through your lack of trust?...You do not understand that which is Divine and therefore cannot comprehend the depth and breadth of My Presence at your side at all times….There can be tremendous progress for all who make the decision to trust and utilize their faith.”  (JOM, Vol V, #5, Jan. 27, 1995)

 

“Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

(Lk 7:50)

 

Since Faith is a spiritual gift, and not everyone is given the same degree of this gift, just as everyone is not given the same intellectual or athletic gifts, Our Lord warns that care must always be taken not to look down on others who do not comprehend what we might think to be the truth, and that we should not waste time debating the mysticism of God’s judgment, but rather remain silent in judgment of others:

 

“Do not, My beloved people, look down on one another in humiliation.  If you look down on one person, it will not bring you glory.  If you take from one, you take from Me; for I have made the small and the great.  Therefore, let it be made known that all who love their own way, and are caught up in their daily lives, should remain silent in judgment of others because they know not the Way of the Lord.  They only know how to gain their own glory against the Truth of the Word of the Eternal God….” 

“…Do not spend wasteful time discussing the mysticism of God’s judgment.  This is beyond your understanding; and what can even penetrate My Father’s judgment?  I never said you should argue or debate what is true or not true of My Father’s judgment, because you cannot comprehend it.  This does not do good, but only proves useless!”  (JOM, Vol IV, #45, July 31, 1992)

 

“Stop judging that you may not be judged!

For as you judge, so will you be judged, and

the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you.”

(Mt 7:1-2)

 

God’s Love

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son,

so that everyone who believes in Him might not perish,

 but might have eternal life….And this is the verdict,

that the Light came into the world,

but people preferred darkness to Light….

But whoever lives the Truth comes to the Light ,

so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.” 

(Jn 3:16-21)

 

Our Catholic Christian faith teaches us that we cannot merit our eternity with God, neither by faith alone, by works alone, nor even by the combination, but only by cooperating with God’s grace which will yield fruits in both our faith and works.  This grace flows from the incomprehensible fountain of God’s Love, and it is this Love that both Our Lord and Our Lady of Emmitsburg wish us to ponder:

 

“My Father instills in you Love.  His goodness draws your will to Love.  He draws your intellect to ponder Him in contemplation.  …You could not love if the Father did not will it.  You could not love Him if He did not draw you to Himself.  Therefore, in contemplation you gain admiration and devotion to His Love….If you have fidelity in love to the Father, you have not only contemplation and admiration, but acts of charity in deeds.”  (JOM, Vol V, #3, Dec. 2, 1994)

 

God’s Light penetrates into each living cell of your body.  He rescues you from darkness through His infinite Love and Divine Mercy….He desires your entire being to be mystically united in the wholeness of His Love.  You may not understand now; but if you briefly reflect on your past, you will notice the pattern of God’s intervention and protection of your soul.  You will see how you were embraced in God’s Love and how you were invited then, as now, to live in His mystical union of Life.”  (Public OLOE, June 4, 1998)

 

“It is necessary to ponder God’s Love and how to incorporate His Love in all your works.  If you ponder His Love daily, you will seek to be like Him, gentle and meek of heart….If you fail to love in a given opportunity, then allow my Son to be merciful to you by allowing  Him to love you.  He will strengthen and enlighten you so that your next opportunity to love will be victorious….Never be so bold as to neglect His Love, or your message of not desiring His gifts will be clear….There is tremendous devastation already in the world due to neglect of His Love.  The United States of America’s abundant resources and graces stem from God’s great Love.  If you lose sight of this Truth, you will jeopardize its future growth and be in tremendous danger….”  (Public OLOE Nov. 7, 1996)

 

This Love of God for all of His children longs for and deserves a response.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg uses several words for us to ponder as she  describes what that response might be—to consecrate and to entrust oneself to God, to contemplate His Love, to absorb and to dive into that Divine  Love:

 

Consecrate your entire being to God, and entrust yourself to His care.  Direct all your actions, duties, intentions, affections and thoughts to Jesus.  Contemplate His Love and the things that are in Heaven.  You will live in Peace and Joy and master all degrees of passion with patience in His Love.” (Public OLOE, Oct. 12, 1995)

 

“Absorb yourself in His Love, and you will be secure, gentle and fearless.  You will rest quietly in the loving contemplation of God and be wonderfully nourished….You will grow in loving confidence of His Truth, and you will realize how much God loves you as you are in your weakness….” (Public OLOE, Feb. 29, 1996)

 

“Little children, dive into My Son’s most merciful Heart by pondering His Love for you….He has given you the great gift of life and desires you to enjoy it to its fullest; however, He also desires you to realize that this life, as you know it to be, is not limited to this world.  It only begins in this world….It is not only the Death and Resurrection of my Son, but the breadth and depth of His Love which He embraced for each one of you in order that you could be free and live with Him for all eternity; free from the chains of pain, misfortune, poverty, illness, sin and death; free, happy and unequivocally His forever and ever….Try to ponder His interior sacrificial Love for you.”  (Public OLOE, Apr. 2, 1998)

 

Although God’s grace and His Love are freely given, they are not given without expectations.  Our Lady of Emmitsburg reminds us that we all have the responsibility to bring those gifts to their maturation or risk losing them, that our true happiness depends on our generous giving and service to others, and that our answer to His grace is ever so important in these chaotic times we are now entering:

 

“God above looks to His children to see how they use His gifts….Do not waste your gifts, but bring them to fruition through prayer and contemplation…..If your minds are preoccupied with the business of daily life, you will lose the opportunity to bring your gifts to their maturation and will therefore position yourself where you risk losing what you have received….Prayer and contemplation will become more difficult if you are not already committed, disciplined and strong stewards of these gifts from God.”  (Public OLOE, June 17, 1999)

 

“To be truly happy, you must love as my Son loves and serve as He served.  The gift of giving to others in genuine love, service and generosity will renew your hearts to receive the blessings from the Father.  Please open your hearts to my Son’s grace or you will not be able to serve one another as He served or receive the pure joy of Love….Ponder your motives, little children, and please respond to the grace God is giving you.”  (Public OLOE, May 4, 2000)

 

“You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart,

with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind,

and your neighbor as yourself.”

(Lk 10:27)

 

“Ponder all the graces that you have received from my Son.  Do not look to what others desire to give you, but look to what my Son has already given you.  You need to ponder the graces, to use them efficiently, and to rise above the challenge of humanity against that which is Divine.  In your hearts you must realize that God Himself loves each of you for who you are, for whom He created you to be, for whom He has redeemed, and for who will answer to His grace in the Light of His Truth.  Ponder, ponder His Words.”  (Private OLOE, July 29, 2003)

 

“I ask you to ponder this most important statement, this most important situation.  Ponder this.  I should like you to process in your heart and in your mind how much the Son of God really loves you—to the extent of His Death!  Are these just words or can you embrace the totality of His Love for you?  Everything that you have, as you know it, is a gift; and even the Love He shares with you and allows you to ponder is a gift from Him.  No one can be elevated to any level without such Love….The world is in turmoil.  Many people are beginning to panic; and, as you know, there is chaos.  In the midst of being one of millions, insignificant and ordinary, how important you are to God!  Can you really ponder this in your heart and invite God to enlighten your mind so that you might know how much is the depth and breadth of His Love?”  (Private OLOE, Mar 14, 2009)

 

“Let the children come to Me, and do not prevent them;

for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

Amen, I say to you,

whoever does not accept the Kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.”

(Lk 18: 16-17)

 

Are you willing to ponder?

 

“Let the one who is wise heed these things

and ponder the loving deeds of the Lord.”

(Ps 107: 43, NIV)

 

 

End of Part 1