By Deborah Kendrick
Prayer is our oxygen as Christians. Once when I was extremely rushed and needed the Lord, I whispered in my heart, I just don’t have time to pray. The reply was instantaneous, Prayer is exchanging time for eternity. Regular prayer with a committed small group allows us to experience flowing together in the breath of the Holy Spirit. It also sets a designated time for angels to gather.
An opportunity unfolded for me recently in our monthly prayer gathering when very soft words were spoken in my heart. . . Wash My feet. Immediately, I was searching on the interior of my life . . . how do I do this? I visited the woman who washed His feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. He was not waiting for me there. As I kept reaching into the world that exists behind my closed eyelids, I found Him on the cross. Jesus was asking me to minister to His afflictions as He hung there, suspended between Heaven and earth.
I became so aware of the wounds of Jesus. Then and now. He had those wounds on the cross and He still has those wounds now. . . . His hands. . . His feet. . . .His side. . . .His head . . . . the lashes on His back. Discovering this some years back had brought me great strength during my own walk through the valley of the shadow of death and I learned to draw comfort and consolation from the wounds of Jesus. I understood that He knew my pain exactly as I was experiencing it. (In one of the darkest moments when I could not even verbalize a prayer, I took my pain and put it in the wound of His hand. You are probably asking how did you do that? Like this – if God can speak to us in images, pictures and visions, we can speak in this language to Him as well. With the “eyes of my heart” I saw the wound in Jesus’ hand and then I pushed my pain in there. )
Just as I was contemplating how to wash our Lord’s feet this day, I saw water pouring from Heaven into those very wounds and falling down on us. I had the sense that we are in the Lord’s timing in this way: before wounds can be healed, they must be washed. Antiseptic is often painful. So it is in our own encounters of healing. In ministering to the wounds of Jesus, we are washing the wounds of others and ourselves before the healing. If this is a new approach for you, it is for me as well.
Paul writes to the Colossians, Now, I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I do my share on behalf of His body, which is the Church, in filling up what is lacking In Christ’s afflictions. Lacking in Christ’s afflictions? Surely nothing was lacking from His perfect, blameless sacrifice. Any lack exists within us. On this day, at the foot of the cross, I participated with the other women there in making up something that was so scarce.
Benevolence. That was certainly lacking in Christ’s afflictions. The presence of benevolent witnesses. When I was invited to wash His feet, I did not realize where He wanted them washed. In the end, I did not get to wash them at all, but to observe water pouring from Heaven into the wounds of His feet and then to our nation. I do not know if there is a name for moments like this. For now, I call them prayerful encounters. All He needed was my time, my undivided attention, my willingness to search a deeper and of course my love. I was the benevolent witness of a wonder from Heaven to earth.
Thank you Jesus. You were bruised for our wrong doings and wounded for our egregious errors. The disorder and correction of our peace was upon You and by the lashes on Your back we are healed. You are the same yesterday, today and forever. We are so grateful for Your continued mercy to us. Glorify Yourself in our lives. Amen.
About the Author:
Deborah Kendrick came into the Catholic Church in 2011 through her interaction with Catholics in ecumenical meetings though out Europe, where she was a conference speaker and led retreats for twenty years. During her testimony, she says, “The French Catholics just loved me into the Church.” She was first ignited for the Lord at the beginning of the outpouring of the Charismatic Renewal. With her husband William, a fine artist, and their five children they traveled extensively, living in France, England and Israel. Deborah’s heart is to see people know and receive the love God has for them which encompasses a New Pentecost for the new evangelization. “God is calling us closer in this hour. Open hearts bring an open Heaven.” You can view more of William’s paintings at www.jerusalemcityofgold.com
“Angel in Florence” drawing by William Kendrick. Used with permission. All rights reserved.