HERE I AM
Excerpt from the "Holy Hours" # 29 by Conchita
Spiritual Setting: Let us listen to Jesus, Who, bending down, with the sweetest accent, says to us,"Here I am ....
I have arrived and I will never again depart."
Petition: Let us ask Him that we also never depart from Him through sin, through imperfection or tepidity, and to have us die before permitting such a disgrace.
Response: Recollection ... that our life be an offering of all our actions to Him without ever losing sight of Him, and endeavoring so that our whole life will be a continual act of love.
"I have arrived, My child, overcoming infinite distances and solving every difficulty that stood in My way .... I have arrived here.... I have reached the loving end that I had in mind when creating this place for My solace.
"I have come to be with you, but do you know for what else I have come?To ask you for your heart ... so that having your Treasure in the monstrance, you would have your heart there also ... so that you could love Me with all your soul, with all your strength, but also with all your heart.
"This is the reason for My coming to the world: to look for man's heart, that is to say, the center of his tenderness, in which I have My delight .... I left heaven because I saw you were very far away, My child, and I contemplated you all alone without the Eucharist ... because My love for you, poor little earthworm, impelled Me to come nearer, so the Word could take on flesh to give it to you divinized in the Sacrament of Love. I desired to livenear and inside of you, and this is the reason I left My throne of Cherubim, and My pedestal of Seraphim. I have come to occupy, with great pleasure, this, My poor and silent dwelling-place upon the earth.
" Ah, dear child of My Heart! If you have loved Me for many years, I have loved you from eternity to eternity; your sins, your forgetfulness, and even your ingratitude were not - listen to Me - were not a reason to cool My love. I have loved you with an eternal love ... in eternal charity have I loved you.
"I have arrived in this place, My child, to tell your heart that which I ask of you today: that My Passion and My martyrdom were not enough to satisfy My thirst for suffering, and I want you to continue doing what I can no longer do;that is to say that you suffer, that you endure, and that, being a victim in My union, you offer yourself with Me, for the sake of My redemptive plans.
"I desire to have here simple, poor, hidden and generous soulsthat have their delight only in sacrificing themselves in My honor.
"I tell you that I formed this holy place, My tabernacle, for us to be hereall alone... nearer to each other... Heart to heart, communicating to you My innermost being in every heartbeat.
"] have arrivedso that you may remain in Me, and so that your heart may have life, because in the same way that the branch cannot bear fruit if it is not attached to the trunk and to the root, you cannot do anything if you are not united intimately with Me, through the purity of your heart, interior solitude, and holy recollection.... Thus you will imitate Me more easily, crucifying yourself in union with Me, for there is no other way to become more spiritual than to mortify oneself."
"Unite yourself with My soul, My child, with My spirit, with My merits, with My virtues, with My divine life, for this is the Sacrament of union with God.
"You must come out of your self-love and enter forever in Me; it is necessary that the eyes of your soul are always here, open to contemplate Me .... It is necessary that you bend your ear, 'Audi filia,' in order to listen to Me; bend,
O yes, bend the ears of your soul to My voice: 'Forget your father's house, because you shall be the object of the King's love.' Live in My presence; feed yourself with My life; rest, pure and humble, upon My Heart, listening to the soft and mysterious voice of love in this quiet and silent altar.
"When you arrive at My Feet, humbled and pure, self-denied and recollected, you will understand many truths of self-knowledge, illuminated by the very light of God; you will touch the depth of your misery… you will cry for your failures … you will understand My predilection for you … and you will experience the fortitude and the peace of the Holy Spirit.
"A spiritual life is what I am pursuing for My beloved souls; a life of prayer, because all the power of saints sprouts from it; but to really lead a divine life, it is necessary that you give Me your heart, that you remain in Me, because, 'If you remain in Me,' I said on one occasion, 'and My words remain in you, ask for whatever you want and it will be done to you.' ... 'If you love Me, you will keep My word, and My Father will love you and We will come to you, and make Our dwelling with you.'
"Courage, then, My children, forI have arrived to count your virtues and to compare your fervor, comforting Myself with your love, and suffering from your forgetfulness! ... I follow you with My glances, I have you printed in My pupils and your name is engraved upon My Heart. .. and when I see you approaching Me, to find breath and life, here at My feet, I will spill out My graces. I abound in tenderness, and I wish to bring you nearer and nearer to Him Who is your life, by means of perfect virtues, of constant humility and voluntary self-denial."
"Why should I not tell My children, in loving confidence, what I desire? In this place, at the foot of the tabernacle, I desire more purity and humility, more self-denial and abnegation.... I want their souls to be divinized.... And how? With a hidden life in union with God, denying themselves, feeding themselves with virtues, and proving their lovewith actions.
"My child, uproot the bad weeds from your heart, and reach down into your heart until you achieve a void of yourself, a void which you must fill with Jesus. A loving child must not always stay the same size, I must say, but a loving child must always be LESS, leaving aside at every moment the bark of its self-love, of its affections, and its desires - even its own being until its own personality, that is its ego, disappears - so that only He Who Is reigns in the soul, the soul's Eucharistic Jesus, absorbing everything and giving it life.
"It is necessary to free yourself from everything that is earthly, to be pure in actions and more simplified in love.
"At the foot of the altar you must be lost to yourself and absorbed in Me, conquered by My beauty, My goodness and My love .... You must let go of everything that is material, of your feelings, of the world, with your glance so purified that, penetrating through the natural darkness, it may candidly penetrate God's light.
"My love desires all this, My children, that same perfection in every soul who comes to kneel at My feet. This is whyI have arrived not only at the steps of this altar, but in the depths of their hearts.
"I desire that they offer Me up to the Father with great purity of soul, with a very supernatural and loving intention, and with profound self-denial, uniting themselves lovingly to My own immolation.
" A glance, a sigh, will be sufficient, and an interior lifting up of the heart, a light touch of their souls with Divinity, an elevation of the spirit eagerly looking for Him Who is their everything, so that they may increase their intimate life with God, to Whom they must aspire with all their strength. Be always recollected, with a simple and natural recollection, practicing all the virtues, without anyone noticing it.
"Finally,take up your cross and follow Me. And what does it mean to take up the cross and follow Me? It consists of coming out of yourself ... renouncing yourself ... dying to any personal desire so that only I may live and reign in your soul. This means to say NO to your yes, and YES to your no; then you will have accomplished your vocation as victims, and given Me true comfort. This is what it means to crucify oneself ... this is what it means to lose the old life and to come out of yourself to live within Me ... so that I may live in you; this is the reason I left My throne of Cherubim to arrive at this altar so that I may live in you."
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus! What can I say? Only that I desire to please You and to sanctify myself with these celestial teachings that You give me today. I desire and I ask You for this true transformation into Yourself. I will happily study You in the delightful hours I spend at Your side, surmising Your desires and flying to accomplish them. I will remove distractions from my souL ... I will try to practice emptiness and solitude of soul, with holy recollection; I will be a voluntary martyr, renouncing myself with an ever more lively love that may surpass everything. All of this will form, within my spirit, that interior life that You demand of me.
My heart is Yours alone, Jesus. I shall live concealed inside of the consecrated Host which is my heaven, my life, my all, and be hidden, like the violet.
An interior glance, simple and pure, with every worldly dust and self-love shaken away, enclosing a tender prayer for sinners, will be the continual food of my adoration, when I have the happiness to come here.
O Jesus, how much do I love You! But ever since You have come to Your throne, this love in me is strange, grown up, fiery, immense. I love You, I love You, my Heaven, with Your own love, undoubtedly, and this is why my heart melts, kindled by such heavenly fire; turn it to ashes that a new life might be transplanted into it, another life, another soul, another being, making my life disappear, so You, Jesus of all my soul, may occupy the place of this poor child who was, but who is no more, because Another One has taken my place. Who can it be? ... You know.... Who can it be, O my Treasure, my Beloved, my Life -He Who came and stole all of my heart?
Mary, Queen of my heart, now that I possess Jesus in my soul, grant that I may never let Him depart, that I close the door with the greatest love. Amen.