The Beast In The Abyss

Taken in Vatican Museum, 2012, by Martha Wiggins

Taken in Vatican Museum, 2012, by Martha Wiggins

“The beast, which you saw, once was, now is not, and yet will come up out of the Abyss and go to its destruction.”  Revelation 17:8

When the things of this world are not enough, or even too much, we are left feeling empty, drained of all our energy.  We lose our desire also, desire to achieve, desire to love, desire to put forth any effort toward anything.  This overwhelming emptiness is an abyss.

Our abyss can become a hole so vast that it can be much too difficult for us to bridge.  When it is too wide and too deep to bridge, it cannot be crossed unless it is first filled driving out the beast within to its destruction.  But how?  One shovelful at a time.  With what?  With thoughts, words, and actions from another world, His.  It is this world that created our abyss.  It is this world that has left us so empty, so drained of all energy.

Where do we even begin?  The first instinct is to say fall on your knees and pray, which is always a good answer.  However, if you are empty, you have probably already done so., and maybe done so many times with seemingly no results.  Instead, turn to your Bible,  where the inspired Word can provide us with answers and needed guidance.   But, do start with a prayer before you read.  I have a simple one that I pray each time before reading in my Bible,  “Through your most Holy Word, Lord, I invite you into my heart.  Transform me according to your will.”  Say it out loud; mean it.  Or, as I always tell my kids, own it.  Then, with an open spirit, begin reading.  A good place to start is with any one of the four Gospels.  Begin with just one or two verses, and let that be it for the day.  If something in them strikes you, or makes you feel something, jot it down.  Stick in on your fridge, in your pocket, or in your car.  Look at it during you day.  Think about it, ponder it.  Pray for wisdom about it.  If it won’t let go of you, do a little research on it to better understand it.  Satisfy or reconcile yourself concerning it.  Do this everyday.  Fill your mind with the Good News of the Gospels.

The overall message of the Gospels is such an uplifting one, that you will begin to see your emptiness, your void, your abyss start to fill.  Your outlook, even toward your abyss will change to one of hope rather than despair.  You will also find yourself desiring to spend more time in His Word, desiring more time in meditative prayer.  Soon you will notice your abyss filling up with things of His world.  Soon your world will be transformed by His world.  Desire will return, desire to be all that you can be, desire to be all that He created you to be.  The beast of your abyss will have gone to its destruction and have been replaced with the glory of God..

“By reading in the scriptures I am so renewed that all nature seems renewed around me and with me.  The sky seems to be a pure, a cooler blue, the trees a deeper green.  The whole world is charged with the glory of God and I feel fire and music under my feet.”  Thomas Merton

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