WHAT does it mean that Jesus desires to restore to mankind the “Gift of Living in the Divine Will”? Among other things, it is the restoration of true sonship. Let me explain…
THE NATURAL SONS
I was blessed to marry into a farm family. I have wonderful memories working alongside my father-in-law, whether it was feeding the cattle or fixing a fenceline. Always eager to help him, I dug right in doing whatever he asked—but often with a lot of help and guidance.
When it came to my brothers-in-law, however, it was a different story. I was amazed how they could practically read their dad’s mind to solve a problem, come up with a fix, or innovate on the spot with often few words spoken between them. Even after being part of the family for years and learning some of the routines, I was never able to acquire the intuition they had as natural sons of their father. They were like extensions of his will who simply took over his thoughts and put them into action… while I was left standing there wondering what this seemingly secret communication was!
Moreover, as natural-born sons, they have rights and privileges with their father that I do not. They are the heirs to his inheritance. They possess a memory of his heritage. As his progeny, they also enjoy a certain filial intimacy (even though I often steal more hugs from my father-in-law than anyone else). I am, more or less, an adopted son…
THE ADOPTED SONS
If through marriage I became an “adopted” son, so to speak, it is through Baptism that we become adopted sons and daughters of the Most High.
For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, “Abba, Father!”… [who] has bestowed on us the precious and very great promises, so that through them you may come to share in the divine nature… (Romans 8:15, 2 Peter 1:4)
However, in these last times, what God has begun in Baptism He now wishes to bring to completion on earth as part of the fullness of His plan by giving the Church the “Gift” of full sonship. As theologian Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi explains:
…despite Christ’s Redemption, the redeemed do not necessarily possess the rights of the Father and reign with him. Though Jesus became man to give all who receive him the power to become sons of God and became the firstborn of many brothers, whereby they may call him God their Father, the redeemed do not by Baptism fully possess the rights of the Father as Jesus and Mary did. Jesus and Mary enjoyed all the rights of a natural sonship, i.e., perfect and uninterrupted cooperation with the Divine Will… —The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, (Kindle Locations 1458-1463), Kindle Edition.
St. John Eudes affirms this reality:
For the mysteries of Jesus are not yet completely perfected and fulfilled. They are complete, indeed, in the person of Jesus, but not in us, who are his members, nor in the Church, which is his mystical body.—St. John Eudes, treatise “On the Kingdom of Jesus”, Liturgy of the Hours, Vol IV, p 559
What was “completely perfected and fulfilled” in Jesus was the “hypostatic union” of his human will with the Divine Will. In this way, Jesus always and everywhere shared in the interior life of the Father and thus all the rights and blessings this entailed. In fact, prelapsarian Adam also shared in the interior life of the Trinity because he possessed the Divine Will within the void of his human will such that he fully participated in the power, light, and life of his Creator, administering these blessings throughout creation as though he were “king of creation.” ‘Insofar as Adam’s soul possessed an unlimited capacity to receive God’s eternal operation, the more Adam welcomed God’s operation into the succession of his finite acts, the more he expanded his will, shared in God’s being, and established himself as “head of all human generations” and the “king of creation.”‘ —Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, (Kindle Locations 918-924), Kindle Edition
However, after the fall, Adam lost this possession; he was still able to do the will of God but he was no longer capable of possessing it (and thus all the rights that gave him) in his wounded human nature.
After Christ’s act of Redemption, the gates of Heaven were opened; mankind’s sins could be forgiven and the Sacraments would enable believers to become members of the Father’s family. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, souls could conquer their flesh, conform their will to God’s, and abide in Him in such a way as to come to a certain interior perfection and union, even on earth. In our analogy, this would be comparable to me doing my father-in-law’s wishes perfectly and with complete love. However, even this would still not grant the same rights and privileges or blessings and share in his fatherhood like his own natural-born sons.
A NEW GRACE FOR THE LAST TIMES
Now, as the mystics of the 20th century such as Blessed Dina Belanger, St. Pio, Venerable Conchita, Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta etc. have revealed, the Father indeed wishes to restore to the Church on earth this “gift of Living in the Divine Will” as the final stage of her preparation. This Gift would be akin to my father-in-law giving to me by favour (the Greek word charis means favour or “grace”) and infused knowledge what his own sons received by nature.
If the Old Testament bestowed upon the soul the sonship of “slavery” to the law, and Baptism the sonship of “adoption” in Jesus Christ, with the gift of Living in the Divine Will God bestows upon the soul the sonship of “possession” that admits it to “concur in all that God does”, and to partake in the rights to all of his blessings. To the soul that freely and lovingly desires to live in the Divine Will by faithfully obeying it with a “firm and resolute act”, God bestows upon it the sonship of possession. —The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, (Kindle Locations 3077-3088), Kindle Edition
This is to fulfill the words of the “Our Father” in which we have been imploring that His “Kingdom come and will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” It is to enter into God’s “eternal mode” through possession of the Divine Will, and thus enjoy by grace the very rights and privileges, power and life that are Christ’s by nature.
On that day you will ask in my name, and I do not tell you that I will ask the Father for you. (John 16:26)
As St. Faustina testified after receiving the Gift:
I came to understand the inconceivable favors that God has been bestowing on me… I felt that everything the heavenly Father possessed was equally mine… “My whole being is plunged in You, and I live Your divine life as do the elect in heaven…” —Divine Mercy in My Soul, Diary, n. 1279, 1395
Indeed, it is also to realize on earth the interior union that the blessed in Heaven now enjoy (ie. all the rights and blessings of true sonship) yet without the beatific vision. As Jesus said to Luisa:
My daughter, living in My Will is the life that most closely resembles the [life of the] blessed in heaven. It is so distant from one who is simply conformed to My Will and does it, faithfully executing its orders. The distance between the two is as far as that of heaven from earth, as far as that of a son from a servant, and a king from his subject. —The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, (Kindle Locations 1739-1743), Kindle Edition
Or, perhaps, the difference between a son-in-law and a son:
To live in My Will is to reign in it and with it, while to do My Will is to be submitted to My orders. The first state is to possess; the second is to receive dispositions and execute commands. To live in My Will is to make My Will one’s own, as one’s own property, and for them to administer it as they intend. —Jesus to Luisa, The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, 184.108.40.206.4
Of this great dignity that the Father wishes to restore to us, Jesus said to Blessed Dina that He wanted to deify her “in the same way as I united My humanity with My divinity… You will not possess me any more completely in heaven… because I have absorbed you totally.” The Crown of Sanctity: On the Revelations of Jesus to Luisa Piccarreta, Daniel O’Connor, (p. 161), Kindle Edition After receiving the Gift, she wrote:
This morning, I received a special grace that I find difficult to describe. I felt taken up into God, as if in the “eternal mode,” that is in a permanent, unchanging state… I feel I am continually in the presence of the adorable Trinity… my soul can dwell in heaven, live there without any backward glance toward earth, and yet continue to animate my material being. —The Crown of Sanctity: On the Revelations of Jesus to Luisa Piccarreta, Daniel O’Connor (pp. 160-161), Kindle Edition
Jesus explains the purpose of this Gift reserved for these “end times”:
The soul must transform itself into Me and become one likeness with Me; it must make My life its own; My prayers, My groans of love, My pains, My fiery heartbeats its own… I desire therefore that My children enter into My humanity and reenact what the soul of My humanity did in the Divine Will… Rising above all creatures, they will restore the rightful claims of creation — My own [rightful claims] as well as those of creatures. They will bring all things to the prime origin of creation and to the purpose for which creation came to be… Thus I shall have the army of souls who will live in My Will, and in them creation shall be reintegrated, as beautiful and fair as when it came forth from My hands. —The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, (Kindle Locations 3100-3107), Kindle Edition.
Yes, this is the work of Our Lady’s Little Rabble: to lead the way by first reclaiming our true sonship via the Gift heaven offers us now according to Christ’s own prayer.
I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one… (John 17:22-23)
If creation fell into disorder through Adam’s disobedience, it is by the restoration of the Divine Will in “Adam” that creation will be re-ordered. This bears repeating:
“All creation,” said St. Paul, “groans and labors up till now,” awaiting Christ’s redemptive efforts to restore the proper relationship between God and his creation. But Christ’s redemptive act did not of itself restore all things, it simply made the work of redemption possible, it began our redemption. Just as all men share in the disobedience of Adam, so all men must share in the obedience of Christ to the Father’s will. Redemption will be complete only when all men share his obedience… —Servant of God Fr. Walter Ciszek, He Leadeth Me (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1995), pp. 116-117
Through the reclamation of true sonship, these sons and daughters will help to restore the original harmony of Eden by “assuming our humanity through a union which is the image of the Hypostatic Union.” Servant of God Archbishop Luis Martinez, New and Divine, p. 25, 33
Hence it follows that to restore all things in Christ and to lead men back to submission to God is one and the same aim. —POPE ST. PIUS X, E Supremi, n. 8
As Cardinal Raymond Burke summarized so beautifully:
…in Christ is realized the right order of all things, the union of heaven and earth, as God the Father intended from the beginning. It is the obedience of God the Son Incarnate which reestablishes, restores, the original communion of man with God and, therefore, peace in the world. His obedience unites once again all things, ‘things in heaven and things on earth.’ —Cardinal Raymond Burke, speech in Rome; May 18th, 2018, lifesitnews.com
Thus, it is through sharing in His obedience that we regain true sonship, with cosmological ramifications:
…is the full action of the original plan of the Creator delineated: a creation in which God and man, man and woman, humanity and nature are in harmony, in dialogue, in communion. This plan, upset by sin, was taken up in a more wondrous way by Christ, Who is carrying it out mysteriously but effectively in the present reality, in the expectation of bringing it to fulfillment… —POPE JOHN PAUL II, General Audience, February 14, 2001
When? At the end of time in Heaven? No. In the “present reality” within time, but particularly during a coming “era of peace” when the Kingdom of Christ will reign “on earth as it is in heaven” through His latter-day saints.
…they reigned with Christ for a thousand years. (Rev 20:4; “thousand” is symbolic language for a period of time)
We do confess that a kingdom is promised to us upon the earth, although before heaven, only in another state of existence… —Tertullian (155–240 A.D.), Nicene Church Father; Adversus Marcion, Ante-Nicene Fathers, Henrickson Publishers, 1995, Vol. 3, pp. 342-343)
Is it not true that your will must be done on earth as it is in heaven? Is it not true that your kingdom must come? Did you not give to some souls, dear to you, a vision of the future renewal of the Church? —St. Louis de Montfort, Prayer for Missionaries, n. 5; www.ewtn.com
A renewal that will come when the Church Militant claims her true sonship.
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|↑1||‘Insofar as Adam’s soul possessed an unlimited capacity to receive God’s eternal operation, the more Adam welcomed God’s operation into the succession of his finite acts, the more he expanded his will, shared in God’s being, and established himself as “head of all human generations” and the “king of creation.”‘ —Rev. Joseph Iannuzzi, The Gift of Living in the Divine Will in the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta, (Kindle Locations 918-924), Kindle Edition|
|↑2||The Crown of Sanctity: On the Revelations of Jesus to Luisa Piccarreta, Daniel O’Connor, (p. 161), Kindle Edition|
|↑3||Servant of God Archbishop Luis Martinez, New and Divine, p. 25, 33|