How do we find peace in this world? Things surround us, sometimes control us. We need, we desire, we obtain, and we still find ourselves in need, in desire, constantly obtaining. This is rooted in what Benedict XVI refers to as a "peculiar" aspect of the human person. We all have at the core of our very being an emptiness that cannot be permeated by another, an isolation that is seemingly devoid of life, but an isolation we must all traverse in time. Ratzinger calls this "the hell of humanity," the place we meet upon our death beds, which for so long we have escaped and that now lies before our eyes as clear and terrifying as an inescapable wasteland of all that is unknown. This is rooted in our common longing for fulfillment, for love. This is the Love of God. He is our fulfillment and our one and only gain, as St. Paul says he considered all else loss so long as he gained Christ. So it is for us now. To gain Christ is our goal, our infused orientation, to experience Love as it is. And peace will follow.
The discord of emptiness in search of fulfillment is due to the reality that love has its illusions, and experience makes this known. What have I sought in my endeavors for fulfillment, for love? What have I hoped to receive from some thing, experience, or person that was or is in no position to give to me? And what have I not allowed the Lord to pour upon me? I find myself desiring Him more and more. Yet I simultaneously desire so much less than Him. This is where the nuance of human frailty is rooted. I can see what is good and choose against it. I can desire to serve Him and in an instant serve my own will. But He knows I am trying, and He gives me another chance. Truly, He bats not an immaterial eyelash at my stumbled bumbling, so long as I am bumbling for Him.
And that is the key. I must invite him into my heart to show me what I do not see I am seeking in my desiring. I'm not going to be perfect. But I am going to be faithful, because He has placed faith within me. I can love Him with fidelity because He has first loved me, and keeps His eyes set upon me even when my eyes look upon anything but Him. This is Love. He knows my heart better than I ever will, and He sets it aflame. And all He desires is for me to experience Love, not even that I return that Love, but that I know I am Loved. But to love is so much more than to be loved and the Lord in His perfection moves us to freely love Him, as He told His daughter Teresa "I would create the world again just to hear you say you love me." His Love is this, and so much farther beyond my understanding. Certainly I can love another without having that love returned, but so much more powerful is a love shared and bonded in the Lord of Love, and thus I am compelled to respond to Him.
I am thankful for a hunger no feast can fill. I am thankful to have this longing for the Lord and to know that I am Loved. Lord I love you, recreate me in your Love.