Getting to know each other, I mentioned my love of cheese. "I could give up meat before I could give up cheese," I proclaimed.
"So, you love cheeses."
The Soldiergirl wants to know what my relationship with Jesus is. I thought, surely the explicit answer lies within the pages of this blog, five years of spiritual exploration. Surely my relationship with Jesus is evident here. But maybe I've also never really tried to answer it as a question. I think as Catholics, we're not entirely comfortable with expressing our faith to others. It's just so personal. So, I found myself at a loss for words, on a topic that I thought might be easier for me to express, given that I feel in touch with my spirituality.
So...Jesus. All of the obvious theological answers apply here: Only Son of God, Redeemer, died for our sins, will come again in glory, etc... I don't think this needs a lot of explanation. I'm pretty in line with the teachings of the Catholic Church on who Jesus is.
As to my personal relationship with Jesus: I guess I'd start by saying that I've always had a little difficulty in separating my relationship with all of the members of the Trinity and that they sometimes blur together when I'm in prayer. I feel a sense of God as Mother/Father, as Jesus, and as Spirit. Jesus, primarily, is the teacher and example that I am to model my life after, as exemplified in the Gospels: the living word of God sent for all humanity as the perfect example of God's love. Jesus is present to me in the Eucharist, and through that sacrifice, which I take into my physical body, all barriers are destroyed.
I pray daily, and one of the prayers goes like this: "Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner." It is repeated continually, "ceaselessly" throughout my day, when I can. Jesus is the great healer of my life, who has heard and responded to my desperate cries. Jesus is our God who shares in all of our own suffering and knows it intimately, to the points of betrayal, death, and beyond. Jesus is the author of my conscience.
Jesus first came to me in reoccurring dreams when I was just six years old. We dined at the Last Supper together, his hands extending toward me, welcoming me to the table. I had this vivid dream many times, between the ages of 6-9. And at my First Communion, my classmates joked that I was turning into a "mystic saint" as I had to be carried outside just before we received communion, having fainted after my visions of gold light filling the entire church.
I don't know what all of those things mean, and I haven't thought of them in years. I haven't told virtually anyone about those experiences, and five years into writing about my spiritual life, I'm literally shocked that I've never blogged about my own mystical experiences. I'll have to go back and double check this fact, because I'm incredulous. I just know that today, I'm feeling like it's coming up for a reason and I'm meant to reexamine those experiences again. There is something about it all that scares me...