Rays of Merciful Love Spring 2020

“Mercy is love that seeks to lessen the misery of others” — Bryan Thatcher, MD Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy Newsletter Spring 2020 I find in my own life that saying “Jesus, I trust in You” is much easier than actually living it. Whether it be financial concerns, problems with the children or grandchildren, health issues, or any of life’s difficulties, I struggle to maintain inner peace and completely sur- render to God’s will, which is love and mercy. Living trust in our Lord in times of adversity is an entirely different challenge than when things are going smoothly. A critical word in difficult times is “surrender” — we surrender to God’s will; we do our best and let God do the rest. If the outcome is not what we desired and the world around us is up in flames, we must try to maintain that peace that only He can give. We all have our struggles and battles in life, and Scripture tells us, “I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribu- lation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (Jn 16:33). In my travels, I hear from so many people who have great trials and suffering. I wonder how they get through them; I have been blessed in my life and wonder if, should I have had to live under their circumstances, I would have the strength and courage that they do. But I real- ize that they get their strength from the Lord, and He can do all things. You have probably heard the saying, “The Lord never gives you more than you can handle.” I think a better saying is, “The Lord never gives you more than the two of you can handle!” The Lord gives people the strength to handle these tremendous trials, but a key word is surrender. Saint Faustina knew how to surrender to the Lord even as events happened that she did not understand. She wrote, “So today I submit myself completely and with loving consent to Your holy will, O Lord, and to your most wise decrees, which are always full of clemency and mercy for me, though at times I can neither understand nor fathom them. O my master, I surrender myself completely to You, who are the rudder of my soul; steer it Yourself according to Your divine wishes. I enclose myself in Your most compassionate Heart, which is a sea of unfathomable mercy” ( Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska , 1450). And when St. Faustina was faced with a diagnosis of advanced tuberculosis, she sur- rendered all to His will. She wrote, “After the first examination, the doctor found that my condition was grave. ‘We suspect, Sister, that you do have the ill- ness about which you spoke to me. But Almighty God can do all things.’” “When I entered the room, I steeped myself in prayer of thanksgiv- ing for everything the Lord had been sending me throughout my whole life, surrendering myself totally to His most holy will. A deep joy and peace flooded my soul. I felt a peace so great that, if death had come at that mo- ment, I would not have said to it, ‘Wait, for I still have some matters to attend to.’ No, I would have welcomed it with joy, because I am ready for the meeting with Lord, not only today, but ever since the moment when I placed my complete trust in the Divine Mercy, resigning myself totally to His most holy will, full of mercy and compassion. I know what I am of myself …” ( Diary , 1679). What does the Lord ask of you and me? He told St. Faustina, “So, I turn to you, you — chosen souls, will you also fail to understand the love of My Heart? Here, too, My Heart finds disappointment; I do not find complete surrender to My love. So many reservations, so much distrust, so much caution. To comfort you, let Me tell you that there are souls living in the world who love Me dearly. I dwell in their hearts with delight. But they are few. In convents too, there are souls that fill My heart with joy. They bear My features; there- fore My heavenly Father looks upon them with special pleasure” ( Diary , 367). As I grow older and reflect and learn more of the message of Divine Mercy, it becomes increasingly obvious why our Lord wanted the words “Jesus, I trust in You” below the Image. Trust in God and surrendering to His will is the basic tenet to living the message of Divine Mercy. So whatever trials you are facing at this time, let us strive to trust and surrender totally, knowing that “He must increase, but I must decrease” (Jn 3:30). L IVING THE M ESSAGE AND G OD ’ S W ILL By Bryan Thatcher, MD R AYS OF M ERCIFUL L OVE