Incarnate Wisdom loved the cross from His infancy. (cf Wis 8.2) At His coming into the world, while in His Mother’s womb, He received it from His eternal Father. He placed it deep in His heart, there to dominate His life, saying, “My God and My Father, I chose this cross when I was in Your bosom. (Ps 39.9) I choose it now in the womb of My Mother. I love it with all My strength and I place it deep in My heart to be My spouse and My mistress.” (cf Wis. 8.2)
Throughout His life He eagerly sought after the Cross. If, like a thirsting deer, (cf Ps 41.2) He hastened from village to village, from town to town; if with giant strides (cf Ps 18.6) He pursued his way towards Calvary; if He spoke so frequently of His sufferings and death to His apostles and disciples, (cf Mt 16.21; 17.12,22,23; 20.17- 19) and even to His prophets during his Transfiguration; (cf Lk 9.31) if He so often exclaimed, “I have longed for it with an infinite desire” (Lk 22.15); it was because all His journeying, all His eagerness, all His pursuits, all His desires were directed towards the Cross and because to die in its embrace was for Him the very height of glory and success. He espoused the Cross at His Incarnation with indescribable love. He sought it out and carried it with the utmost joy, throughout His whole life, which became but one continuous cross. After having made several efforts to embrace it in order to die upon it on Calvary, He asked, “How great is my distress until it is completed!” How am I hindered? What is delaying me? Why can I not embrace you yet, dear cross of Calvary? (Lk 12.50)
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Do we embrace the Cross as Christ did? Certainly Mary stood beneath the Cross of Christ and learned from Him and some of our saints have, learned from Jesus through Mary to “see” by faith that suffering can be a “gift”, as St. Mother Theresa of Calcutta wrote:
“ I wonder what the world would be like if there were not innocent people making reparation for us all…?
Today the passion of Christ is being relived in the lives of those who suffer. To accept that suffering is a gift of God.
Suffering is not a punishment. God does not punish. Suffering is a gift though like all gifts, it depends on how we receive it. And that is why we need a pure heart to see the hand of God in our suffering, to feel the hand of God, to recognize the gift of God in our suffering.
Suffering is not a punishment. Jesus does not punish. Suffering is a sign: a sign that we have come so close to Jesus on the cross, that He can kiss us, and show us that He is in love with us, by giving us an opportunity to share in His passion.
Suffering is not a punishment, not a fruit of sin, it is a gift of God. He allows us to share in His suffering and to make up for the sins of the world. " St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta