There are a lot of themes throughout Scripture, and it can be really cool to go through and trace the patterns of one particular theme as it developed through salvation history.
One theme that has been standing out to me lately is the theme of God’s will. I have been reading passages of the writings and prayers of a woman named Luisa Piccarreta, who has been called Little Daughter of the Divine Will for her devotion to the carrying out of God’s will and bringing it about in the world. Luisa is currently undergoing the cause for canonization in the Catholic Church and is a Servant of God. Though her writings are still under examination, prayer groups are encouraged to study her writings, and what she has written has given me new insight into the theme of the Will of God that already exists in Scripture. I have put together this plot line from her insights and my own realizations in Salvation History:
- The Will of God is presented as incredibly powerful even in the first lines of the Bible. In the very beginning, God created everything simply by an expression of His Will. God said, “Let there be light,” or “Let the earth bring forth all kinds of living creatures,” and so it happened. There was an immediacy to the action that resulted, because the act of willing was itself the impetus for creation.
- Lucifer refuses to serve. The refusal to serve the Will of God is, in itself, what resulted in the existence of Hell. In Scripture, we are given the image of a serpent distracting Adam and Eve from God’s Will. And because the human will separated itself from the Divine Will, evil entered the world and life became difficult for man.
- Skip far ahead… all the events of the Old Testament have been God’s attempts to demonstrate the Love He has for humanity, a foreshadowing of the gift that He will give to all men–His Son. An angel appears to a simple woman named Mary, and tells her that God wishes to do something extraordinary through her, which is to bring this Son of God into the world in her womb through a virgin birth. The woman chooses, “Be it done unto me according to Thy Will.” Mary gave her yes, her “fiat,” to God so that He could have full freedom to act upon her life. She begins a chain of unfolding events which will undo the first sin, the first human “no” to God’s Will, with a yes.
- When Mary and Joseph lose the child Jesus, they find Him talking with the elders in the temple, teaching them and asking them questions. Jesus asks His parents, “Didn’t you know I must be about my Father’s business?” He asks us this same question. Jesus was completely about His father’s business, doing everything in God’s Will. So does He want us to do after Him.
- Jesus teaches us the Our Father as an example of how to pray. “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.” In this, Jesus teaches us that one of our most basic prayers should be to call down the Divine Will to be brought about on earth.
- Before Jesus goes to His death, while in agony in the Garden of Gethsemane, He establishes with the Father what Luisa Piccarreta calls the “contract for the Kingdom of the Divine Will upon Earth.” Jesus speaks to the Father, “Father, if it be possible, let this chalice pass from me; yet not my will but Yours be done.” This is the fiat of Jesus. (Non mea voluntas, sed Tua fiat.) Jesus is instituting the era of the “Fiat Voluntas Tua” on earth.
- “Let this chalice pass”– Jesus explains to Luisa that at this moment He is not speaking of the chalice of the pains of His coming cross, for He wanted to suffer these, and Divine Love had been allowing Him to suffer far greater pains during His life than He would in His death. Rather, the chalice which was so bitter to Him was the chalice of the human will, full of vice, being united to His Divine Will. The ugliness of the disobedient human will now had to be thrust upon Him all at once, standing in offence to the sanctity of His Divine Will. And seeing Himself covered in all the evils of the human will is the most fearsome thing of all.
- “Yet not my will but Yours be done.”– Jesus calls upon the Will of God at the very beginning of His passion because seeing His Will done on earth is of primary importance. It has to be God’s primary purpose, because the first evil was to remove ourselves from the Will of God, and since then there was chaos. In this act of fiat, Jesus speaks on behalf of humanity so that men can be saved. This is the contract. He intends to empty the creatures of their will so that the Divine Will might take the first place of honor in our hearts. It is called a “contract” because Jesus is allowed to redeem us by promising that the Fiat would eventually reign on earth and the true purpose of man (serving God with a perfect yes) would be realized, starting with the Yes of Jesus.
- Jesus redeems us on the cross. The fruits of redemption are seen before the fruits of the restoration of God’s Will. We are truly redeemed, but why is there still evil in the world? Because we have free will, and often use it for evil. Our will is still rebelling from God’s Will. Our job as Christians is to restore the earth to God’s will, using the grace that He gave us at the cross, the grace to follow in His example and give our entire lives as fiat.