“When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son.”
What you have done, loving Father,
for your chosen people,
you seek to do in each one of us.
Indeed, we are caught up in this mystery
of your paternal care and tenderness,
enveloped in the Spirit of adoption
who binds us all together as one family
and who also touches each of us, unique.

You gather us together from the land of exile
and lead us through the desert of purification,
drawing us back into the sanctuary of encounter,
where, unified from our sinful fragmentation
and admitted to the interior place of depth
from which we have been scattered in superficiality,
we receive the gift of your Love, ever flowing,
and learn to surrender ourselves in return to you.

“For this reason I kneel before the Father,
from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,
that he may grant you in accord with the riches of his glory
to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inner self,
and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith;
that you, rooted and grounded in love,
may have strength to comprehend with all the holy ones
what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge,
so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

This is the beautiful movement of grace
which you, Father, work in us through your Spirit.
You gather us together in the “inner self”
from which we have been exiled in sin,
from which we have departed in fear and anxiety,
so that, returning here, we may know
–in letting ourselves be gazed upon by you,
yes, in looking trustingly into your gaze upon us–
so that we may know who we truly are.
We know this, not in self-preoccupation,
in the fearful grasping that tries to control,
to fix, or to flee…but in letting ourselves be loved,
and allowing your tender face to reflect in our heart.

This image that reflects in the inner self
is the glory of divine Love, the radiance of pure Light,
the Image of the beloved Son inscribed in us…
in each human heart in a unique and unrepeatable way.
Yes, drawing back together into unity
in the depths of the heart in its solitude,
we discover the gift of Presence here:
Jesus Christ dwelling in our heart through faith,
and in him the Father and the Spirit.

Before this we lived our life un-rooted
from the truth of our identity before you,
from the reality of belovedness in your Son,
our Brother, our Bridegroom, our Friend.
But now, rooted and grounded in love
–in your love for us, and our love for you,
bound together in unity by the bond of the Spirit
and the Son who enfolds us in his embrace–
our heart can expand freely and joyfully.

Just as a tree can only grow tall
and stretch out its branches to heaven,
reaching far and wide in its expanse,
when its roots are immersed deeply in the earth,
so our heart can blossom freely in love
–in the tenderness of relationship with others
and with the whole of creation–
only when we are rooted in the inner truth
of unity and intimacy, dear God, with you.

This is what Christ, your Son, teaches us,
and the mystery into which he takes us in his love.
On the Cross his Heart is like a magnet
drawing all lost and estranged hearts back together,
to be united and reconciled in his embrace.
Here, rooted in the truth of you, Father,
upheld by the Love that sustains the universe,
the flower of our lives blossoms in beauty and in joy.

For from this inner place of encounter and union,
we see such encounter, such intimacy,
at work in every moment and in every thing,
as the reconciling movement of love,
pulsing as a heartbeat from the Heart of Jesus,
flows forth to penetrate and transform all…
until we comprehend in intimate love
what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
and the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge,
so that we may be filled with all the fullness of God.