Sunday, June 12, 2011
Come Holy Spirit of Love
Missa Spiritus Domini
Epistle: Acts 2:1-11 [The Descent of the Holy Ghost.]
Gospel: Jn. 14:23-31 [Promise to send the Paraclete.]
Full Latin-English Propers here.
There are two ways of going about romance. A boy could go around trying to impress a girl, stressing himself out, worrying about whether she will impressed by his efforts, whether or not she will stick around or go after other boys. He rehearses many times beforehand what to say when he tries to talk to her. When He does talk to her, he gets nervous and forgets to say half of what he thought of. When he gets a date, he worries about how well it will go. When they are dating steadily, he worries about keeping her happy and getting the relationship to the "next level".
Or...he could pray to the Holy Ghost. He could ask the Holy Ghost to take care of the relationship. He could ask the Holy Ghost to decide how things will turn out, since, as God, He can give the boy and the girl a better life than they could give themselves. If God is allowed to decide the outcome, it will be greater than if they themselves decide the outcome. Often times the boy worries about what he is to do to impress the girl in different situations. "What does she like?" "What does she want?" Handing things over to God and letting Him choose is exactly what he needs.
The Holy Ghost is the Paraclete. A paraclete is one who speaks for another. A paraclete is exactly what a nervous boy needs and you can't do better than the Paraclete. The Holy Ghost is the one who created the body, so the boy could ask the Holy Ghost to teach him how to properly respect and admire her body. The Holy Ghost is the love between the Father and the Son, a sacrificial love, not a pleasure seeking love, joining them as One, so he could pray that the Holy Ghost teaches him how to love the girl and that their love may join them as one through Holy Matrimony in imitation of the Holy Trinity.
It's amazing the contrast between the world's way of running a relationship and God's way. The world's way involves doing a lot of work on your own amidst much worry seeking in the first place pleasure and good times for yourself. It is a product that feels good for a while but in the end passes like a cloud. She might be pretty now, but after having a baby takes a toll on her body, you no longer find her attractive. What you claimed was "love" is not a thing of the past. It was no more than infatuation. It is a human emotion, nothing more. Love however, is a grace from God. Love is the presence of the Holy Ghost, guiding you to the Sacrament of Matrimony and then through that sacrament throughout your life together. He guides you during the good times, but it is in the bad times that He really makes Himself known. The one who loves you is not the one who shows you a good time; the one who loves you is the one who sticks with you through bad times.
The Holy Ghost teaches you self-sacrifice made not for your benefit, but hers. Love does not desire to receive pleasure but give yourself for the other's good. Love does not seek good times, but companionship. Love teaches you that this girl's body is not something to be used for pleasure, but rather it is the masterpiece of the Divine Artist. He teaches you the dignity of the body. At that point, having a baby only makes her body more respectable as this is the purpose for which her body was made and not only has it served it's purpose, but it has served it's purpose for you. This is a beauty in the body the world cannot see as it cannot see the Creator, the Giver of life. One cannot simply look at the body and see this great beauty or look at a person and love them, whether it is romantic love or familial love or whatever other kind of love. These are things the Paraclete must teach. Why? To love someone is to see them as God sees them and treat them as God treats them. Ergo, no one can love unless the Paraclete teaches them how.