Medjugorje Blue Book
Abandon Yourselves Totally to Me
Other languages: English, Italiano
Date: November 7, 2006 , Last update March 1, 2008
Author: Dr. Fra Slavko Barbarić, OFM , Fra Tomislav Vlašić, OFM
Category: Early Medjugorje Reflections Books , Books , Priests of Medjugorje
Content of the article
This book is the second of the four volumes of sermons and discourses given by Fr. Slavko Barbaric and Fr. Tomislav Vlasic during 1984 - 1987 in Medjugorje, and contains discourses given from January to June 1985.
30 Chapters of this book are now completed
Our Lady has taught us to take three steps forward in group prayer.
I would like to say a few words about my experience in these last few days when really living Good Friday and Easter.
Last year, on Holy Saturday, I received a particular present, very small, but interesting. An orthodox convert came to me bringing a present and saying: 'I want to give you a present and you know what it is. If I bring you money you will say : I do not need it. I have brought you the key to my house, so that you can enter my house whenever you like. I do not know whether you are going to come to my home, but I am happy to give you the key of my house and to know that you may enter it whenever you like.'
You see: the same happened today, all of us received this present. We received the key of our heavenly home. And it is important to understand that with this key which we have received, we can open every door. We can open every problem and solve it. What we have to say today, is that we must begin to live this reality. We have actually received the key of the heavenly door, which means of all the doors of human problems. The Resurrection solves every problem.
Yesterday I read a postcard from a sick nun, who is going to die in a few days. She writes 'you cannot understand my joy because the day is approaching when I will meet my Heavenly Father'. So you see: if we have accepted this key of the heavenly door and live it, even the greatest difficulties in our lives are of no account. We are happy because of the joy and life to come.
And I think that we can understand Our Lady and Her message of peace only if we accept, today, this key, because in the light of the Resurrection all problems are solved, if we adopt the same attitude as Mary Magdalen and say: God is everything for me. If God becomes everything for me, then I use this key of the Resurrection. I will tell you how you can use it: you must be crucified. I would be very sad if today Our Heavenly Father should come back to us full of sadness. He offered everything, He gave us even His Son and we cannot accept this immense gift if we do not extinguish our sins: even a little sin, even a touch of sin prevents us from living this reality.
I want to tell you this, so that you may go on during these days. I say go on, because this day, the Resurrection, is only the first day of the Resurrection; then you will have to live a second, third ... and fortieth one, because Lent lasts forty days, but Easter time lasts forty days too. So we have to walk forty days in the light of the Resurrection and if you begin living this key of faith, then after forty days you will be really changed.
By the way, I must tell particularly the pilgrims and the leaders coming here several times, to go on going deeper into the meaning of the messages of prayer. When we say going deeper into the messages about prayer I can see two very important aspects: first, my prayer must become more and more recollected. I have to go inside myself, into the messages, listen to them, understand them: my prayer must become more and more recollected. I must hear God's voice inside my conscience.
On the other hand, my prayer must become every day more and more active towards my neighbour, towards achieving what I have understood in prayer, achieving it in relation to others.
The last time I said that Our Lady insisted on frequent confession. She said, however, that if you go to confession without achieving it in relation to others, your confession is not complete. In this sense if I have offended somebody and I do not achieve what I have confessed, confession has not brought forth its fruit.
Now, for prayer groups, this opening to humility is very important, when the group acknowledges its own weaknesses, because when the group confesses, not sacramental confession, but the confession of their own lives, everybody becomes one in humility and in their opening towards God. So God can then proceed further.
Last time Our Lady taught us to take three steps forward in group prayer.
The first step is UNBURDENING EVERY SIN AND EVERY RESENTMENT OF ONE'S SINS, they must truly be put aside. Without this step we will not enter into prayer. We can only reach the beginning and the pang of conscience is repeated, the analysis of sins is repeated.
We must leave our sins aside, confess them and, at the same time, to LEAVE OUR CARES TO GOD. When we have taken this step we enter freedom, we are in touch with God. Now, the Holy Spirit speaks to us because we are free and, in this second step, we pray for God's plans, because a clean and free heart can understand what God plans inside us. If we have not taken this step forward, then we cannot progress in prayer, for, as the Virgin said to Jelena : "A lot of Christians in daily prayer only reach the beginning of prayer but go no further."
The third stage of prayer is to ASK FOR BLESSING. But when we speak of blessing we do not mean something magic. Our Lady speaks of something real. When in the divine plan of prayer I saw what God wants of me, then I start achieving this. God gives me the strength and I understand His blessing as the strength to achieve what God wants of me. At the same time I must take, accept and cherish this blessing like a precious pearl. Several times Our Lady said to us : "You receive the blessing, then you forget it."
Now you can see that all these three points are to be developed every day, to be improved every day, so when we speak about improvement in prayer, we mean actually improving these three elements. If you try to improve these three elements your prayer will become continuous. If you want to cherish the divine blessing inside yourselves you must pray constantly, that is bring prayer into your everyday life and if you want to be able to enter into prayer, you must achieve what prayer requires of you; if you do that, you will be happy.
Perhaps these words are too many. We are used to uttering too many words also, we priests. I am only going to say: go on in prayer, go on into the depth of prayer. As you go into the depth of prayer, so the divine light will increase.
Several people told me during these days: I want faith. But anyone can have faith; but it depends on you. Faith means taking a step forward. I cannot see the town from the other side of the mountain: I have to climb. If I want to have a greater light, in my faith, I have to take the steps I understand.
There is no need to ask for advice, as people do in the confessional; this advice is already in the Gospel and we all can understand it. You need to take those steps that are in the Gospel: so the light will become brighter.
I wish that this day of Resurrection may be only the beginning of a beautiful life for you all. Have a good journey. And best wishes.
Fr. Tomislav Vlasic 7th April, 1985)