There is some discussion about Mother Theresa and her “dark night of the soul,” or the last half of her life until her death when she experienced no “feeling” of the presence of God.
Some would try to tarnish her image for this. Some express shock that Mother Theresa did not live in a spiritual state of ecstasy for all the compassion and good works she accomplished for the poor.
The last three phrases from her commentary, Do It Anyway, demonstrate her determination to love God and humankind despite her lack of “feeling” of God.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway!
People really need help but may attack you if you help them. Help people anyway!
Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you’ve got anyway!
A few may consider her works, writing, and life mystical. Reading these words, I call it down right practical.
I have never studied mysticism, and I don’t pretend to understand it fully. But what makes sense to me is that a person or action isn’t mystical unless it involves something spiritual connected to something earthly that produces something eternal.
Many believers are afraid of the word “mystical.” It sounds too spooky. Maybe it belongs to another era or another man’s religion.
Mysticism is the blending of heaven and earth to create eternity. It is what Jesus did when He became a mortal, died on the cross, resurrected, and now lives forever. He is the ultimate example of heaven and earth blending for an eternal outcome.
A simpler way to understand the mystical blend of heaven and earth is rain that comes from heaven and touches common dirt. There is something about the initial drops of a shower that first touches common soil. The aroma is intoxicating. It is magical. That mixture has great potential to nourish and sustain life on earth. God deigned His shadow to shimmer within a raindrop, and let that drop fall to mix with the earth and create something that will bring life. That is my personal idea of mystical.
The blending of heaven and earth is a fraction of forever.
There is an important place for mysticism for those who are disciples of Jesus. According to my limited definition, Mother Theresa exuded that life of mysticism. Her love for God drove her to serve and care for the poor with practicality. She took that poverty within herself, becoming poor in Spirit and body to serve and show God’s love and compassion to the hurting. I believe her works produced fruit for eternity.
The heavenly part of mysticism is the Spirit unction of Mother Theresa to move in compassion toward the hurting. The earthly part is her practical response of service, even in the face of ungratefulness, misunderstanding, and the lack of personal“feeling” of God’s love.
Something mystical, something eternal is what happens when those two blend—the heavenly and the earthly—and the destitute are forever changed by human service and the love of God that prompts the service.
I guess that would or could make any of us who love God and who are moved to serve humankind, potentially mystic.