Hiding Oneself in the Holy Wounds of Christ
Guest Post by Wilson Gavin
The Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ was the most brutal event to have happened in all of Creation. Upon Him was inflicted the lash, the thorns, the nails, the spear. His Holy Feet were torn to shreds by sharp stones, His Gentle Hands were pierced, His Shoulder bore the weight of our manifold sins, His Heart burst with Love for us. One cannot help but weep to think of the immensity of suffering which He bore willing for our sake. He is a God that suffers with us. It was the knowledge of that which truly brought me back to the Faith. The knowledge that Catholicism, unlike every other major religion, has no answer to suffering. No answer, but the broken and naked Body of a God who is willing to suffer alongside us.
“We are called to bear our suffering with joy…”
We are called to bear our suffering with joy, to sacrifice that which is precious to us and unite that pain with Him upon the Cross. We are called as Christians to embrace the misfortunes we will meet upon the road, to see them as gifts from God and a chance to come closer to Him. But it is hard. It is sometimes so very hard to embrace suffering, and pain, and sacrifice, but Christ knows this. His “yoke is easy, and his burden is light”. He tells us, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”. He does not want us to worry, or to fret, or to tie ourselves up in anxieties and doubts. And He gives us a very special gift. He gives us His Holy Wounds.
“There is no place more comforting to rest in Christ’s Wounds…”
“In Thy wounds I fain would hide, ne’er to be parted from thy side”. There is no place more comforting to rest in Christ’s Wounds, to sip of the Water of Life and the Blood of Salvation which trickles from them. There is no better place to lay our struggles down, to place them in the waiting, out-stretched, broken arms of Our Saviour. He has borne every sin already, carried them, carried us, been crucified upon them. Borne them joyfully, and without complaint. And yet still He waits upon them Cross, never hesitating help us through our suffering, never baulking at the burdens which we load onto Him at every moment. His Holy Wounds are boundless, and open, waiting hopefully for every soul which is willing to avail themselves to their protection.
Thomas a Kempis said that, “If you can not soar up as high as Christ sitting on his throne, behold him hanging on his cross. Rest in Christ’s Passion and live willingly in his holy wounds”.
To rest in His Passion. To live willingly in His Holy Wounds. What better path is there to Heaven? To live within the Passion of Christ, and to live it, to live a life of sacrifice, and service, and self-giving, unconditional love.
“Suffering is an inevitability in life.”
Suffering is an inevitability in life. Our sins make it so. And yet, when we ask Christ, beg Christ, to join us in our sufferings, it is not so bad. The yoke becomes easy. The burden becomes light. To know that He can hide us in His Holy Wounds as terror and grief and death and sin rage unabated in the world outside. It is a terrific comfort. It is a terrific comfort to know that, when we suffer, we have a God who suffers with us.
“Eternal Father, I offer Thee the Wounds of Our Lord Jesus Christ, to heal the wounds of my soul.”
*** At the time of the first publication of this post (2016), Wilson Gavin was an eighteen-year-old Australian currently teaching in Mongolia. He asks for your prayers.
In January of 2020, he committed suicide after social media bullying.
Please say a prayer for his soul.
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