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Practice Union with Jesus

We have said that living the spiritual life is a life lived in the Jesus Process. We have defined the Jesus Process as the Risen Christ transforming Jesus’ lived experience on earth into a power source, out of which the Risen Christ gifts us with his Spirit who empowers us to live lives of faith, hope and love.

Now let us ask ourselves: How do we live the reality of the Jesus Process? The simple answer is: Practice union with the historical Jesus in whatever you do in the spiritual life. Practice resurrection with the Risen Christ. Practice empowerment with the Spirit. Not as isolated practices but each flowing from the other in the dynamics of the Jesus Process. Here we will focus just on practicing union with the historical Jesus.

The Cursillo Tripod defines what we do in the spiritual life. Can we apply the Jesus Process to the living of this growth model? Our pursuit of holiness, formation and evangelization are in fact encounters with the Jesus Process. Being a fully human being, Jesus had to grow through this growth model as he grew in wisdom, age and grace, prompted and supported by the Holy Spirit. As the Risen Christ, Jesus perpetuates his developmental process, so that Jesus can now invite us into the Jesus Process of his growth experience.

The reality of the Jesus Process transforms the Cursillo growth process for holiness, formation and evangelization from simply a methodology based on good human psychology into a personal relationship or encounter with Jesus. Previously we defined these terms in the abstract and set them up as a model to live by. But what the reality of the Jesus Process does is to encourage us to unite ourselves with Jesus in his search for holiness, in his efforts for spiritual formation and in his efforts at evangelization. Jesus invites us to experience with him his lived experience of his developmental process and his evangelization activities as here and now experiences.

Practice Union in Holiness. Before praying the Vision for Life prayer, unite with Jesus imagining him praying to obtain God-centeredness: “My God, be the center of my life. Let me see all through Your eyes. Let me see myself as beloved by You from all eternity.” Then let Jesus lead you to the Risen Christ’s resurrection and the Spirit’s empowerment. Before attempting to grow in any virtue such as compassion for others or dependency on the Spirit, or before entering into any prayer, let Jesus lead the way.

Before Mass unite with Jesus at the Last Supper when he washed the feet of the apostles and gave himself as self-gift to us in the Eucharist, truly a love feast. Let the Risen Christ transform that historical event into an ongoing love feast and empower us with the Spirit to make it a here and now experience for us to love Jesus and others more.

Practice Union in Spiritual Formation. Before spending time studying scripture, performing spiritual reading, or attending retreats or lectures to form ourselves in the spiritual life, let us unite with the historical Jesus. Imagine Jesus unfurling the scrolls of the Old Testament and spending much time studying them in an effort to discover His identity and mission. Again, let Jesus lead you in your pursuit of spiritual formation. He will change everything from history into a here and now experience through the Jesus Process.

Practice union in evangelization. Before attempting to help people to enter into themselves and discover themselves as Jesus did with the Samaritan woman at the well or with Nicodemus who sought Jesus’ wisdom, let us unite with the historical Jesus. Let Jesus begin our evangelization efforts and be the catalyst of the Jesus Process.