Sunday, May 31, 2015

In this life there will always be temptations...



"No one in this world is so perfect or holy as not have temptations sometimes.  We can never be entirely free of them."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Thirteen

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Always be on guard...



"We will never be free of trials and temptations as long as our earthly life lasts.  For Job has said: "Is not the life of human beings on earth a drudgery?"  (Job 7:1).  Therefore, we should always be on our guard against temptations, always praying that our enemy, the devil "who never sleeps but constantly looks for someone to devour." (1 Pet 5:8), will not catch us off guard."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Thirteen

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Our peace is in God...



"Then too they grieve, while they sigh and pray because of the miseries they endure.  They grow weary of this life and long for death in order to be with Christ, their Lord.  It will also be clear to them that there is neither perfect peace or security in this world."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Twelve

Rely only on God...



"Therefore, people should rely so entirely on God that they have no need to look for human consolations when adversity comes.  When people of good disposition are afflicted or tempted or distracted by evil thoughts, then they understand the need they have of God and that without Him they can do nothing."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Twelve

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Breaking our pride...



"It is good for us to run into opposition and to have others think badly of us, even when our intentions are good.  For these things help us to be humble and rid of us pride.  Then we seek God more earnestly, Who alone knows our inmost self, when outwardly we are ignored and discredited by others."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Twelve

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The empty promises of this life...



"It is good that everything is not always to our liking; for adversity makes people look into their hearts in order to realize that they are exiles and must not put their hopes in any worldly thing."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Twelve

Monday, May 25, 2015

break it off early...



"It is not easy to break bad habits and harder still to give up your own will.  But if you do not overcome the little things, how do you expect to overcome the greater?  Therefore, resist your evil inclinations at the start and break off bad habits, or little by little they will lead you into greater difficulties."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Sunday, May 24, 2015

On breaking evil habits...



"But now it is considered wonderful if we still hold onto a spark of our first fervor.  It is far easier to break evil habits at the outset, for then acts of virtue are done more easily and with a happy heart."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Pentecost Novena, Day Nine


NINTH DAY (Saturday, Vigil of Pentecost)
Thou, on those who evermore Thee confess and Thee Adore, in Thy sevenfold gift, Descend; Give Them Comfort when they die; Give them Life with Thee on high; Give them joys which never end. Amen.

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, grant me the gifts of fidelity and final perseverance, that in all my days I may seek, love and serve your holy Will.

The Fruits of the Holy Spirit
The gifts of the Holy Spirit perfect the supernatural virtues by enabling us to practice them with greater docility to divine inspiration. As we grow in the knowledge and love of God under the direction of the Holy Spirit, our service becomes more sincere and generous, the practice of virtue more perfect. Such acts of virtue leave the heart filled with joy and consolation and are known as Fruits of the Holy Spirit. These Fruits in turn render the practice of virtue more attractive and become a powerful incentive for still greater efforts in the service of God, to serve Whom is to reign.

Prayer
Come, O Divine Spirit, fill my heart with Thy heavenly fruits, Thy charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, faith, mildness, and temperance, that I may never weary in the service of God, but by continued faithful submission to Thy inspiration may merit to be united eternally with Thee in the love of the Father and the Son. Amen.
 Our Father and Hail Mary once. Glory be 7 times; Act of Consecration; Prayer for the Seven Gifts

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


Try to overcome one fault at a time instead of attacking the entire mountain...



"If we would overcome one fault a year we would soon be perfect!  But often we find that we were better and purer when we first turned to God than after years supposedly spent in His service.  Actually, our fervor and desire for virtue should increase every day as we grow older."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Friday, May 22, 2015

Pentecost Novena, Day Eight


EIGHTH DAY (Friday, 7th Week of Easter)
Bend the stubborn heart and will, melt the frozen warm the chill. Guide the steps that go astray!

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, bend the hearts of all who seek to destroy our faith, may they be moved by your mercy and truth to change their ways and become faithful followers of your holy Will.

The Gift of Wisdom
Embodying all the other gifts, as charity embraces all the other virtues, Wisdom is the most perfect of the gifts. Of wisdom it is written "all good things came to me with her, and innumerable riches through her hands." It is the gift of Wisdom that strengthens our faith, fortifies hope, perfects charity, and promotes the practice of virtue in the highest degree. Wisdom enlightens the mind to discern and relish things divine, in the appreciation of which earthly joys lose their savor, whilst the Cross of Christ yields a divine sweetness according to the words of the Saviour: "Take up thy cross and follow me, for my yoke is sweet and my burden light.

Prayer
Come, O Spirit of Wisdom, and reveal to my soul the mysteries of heavenly things, their exceeding greatness, power and beauty. Teach me to love them above and beyond all the passing joys and satisfactions of earth. Help me to attain them and possess them for ever. Amen.
 Our Father and Hail Mary once. Glory be 7 times; Act of Consecration; Prayer for the Seven Gifts

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


Getting to the root of the difficulty...




"If our religion consists only in outward observances, our piety will soon come to an end.  We had better lay our axe to the root, that being purged of our passions, we may possess our soul in peace."

 Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Pentecost Novena, Day Seven



SEVENTH DAY (Thursday, 7th Week of Easter)
Heal our wounds--our strength renews; On our dryness pour Thy dew, Wash the stains of guilt away.

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, wash my sins and the sins of our nation in the redeeming Blood of the Beloved Son. Heal the wounds that bind our sins; help us to see God’s plan and give us the grace to carry it out.

The Gift of Counsel
The gift of Counsel endows the soul with supernatural prudence, enabling it to judge promptly and rightly what must done, especially in difficult circumstances. Counsel applies the principles furnished by Knowledge and Understanding to the innumerable concrete cases that confront us in the course of our daily duty as parents, teachers, public servants, and Christian citizens. Counsel is supernatural common sense, a priceless treasure in the quest of salvation. "Above all these things, pray to the Most High, that He may direct thy way in truth."

Prayer
Come, O Spirit of Counsel, help and guide me in all my ways, that I may always do Thy holy will. Incline my heart to that which is good; turn it away from all that is evil, and direct me by the straight path of Thy commandments to that goal of eternal life for which I long.

Our Father and Hail Mary once. Glory be 7 times; Act of Consecration; Prayer for the Seven Gifts


ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


Helps are always near...



"If only we would exert ourselves and take a firm stand in this battle, we would see how God comes to our aid, for He is always ready to help those who put their trust in Him.  He even provides occasions for us to do battle so that we will overcome and be victorious."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Pentecost Novena, Day Six



SIXTH DAY (Wednesday, 7th Week of Easter)

If Thou take Thy grace away, nothing pure in man will stay, All his good is turn'd to ill.

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, fill your humble servants with your light, especially our bishops and priests, that they may be faithful witnesses and humble servants, always drawing closer to your holy Will.

The Gift of Understanding
Understanding, as a gift of the Holy Spirit, helps us to grasp the meaning of the truths of our holy religion BY faith we know them, but by Understanding we learn to appreciate and relish them. It enables us to penetrate the inner meaning of revealed truths and through them to be quickened to newness of life. Our faith ceases to be sterile and inactive, but inspires a mode of life that bears eloquent testimony to the faith that is in us; we begin to "walk worthy of God in all things pleasing, and increasing in the knowledge of God."

Prayer
Come, O Spirit of Understanding, and enlighten our minds, that we may know and believe all the mysteries of salvation; and may merit at last to see the eternal light in Thy Light; and in the light of glory to have a clear vision of Thee and the Father and the Son. Amen.

Our Father and Hail Mary once. Glory be 7 times; Act of Consecration; Prayer for the Seven Gifts 

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena
On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena
O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.


Dying to self-love...



"If we were to die to self-love, soon we would enjoy spiritual things and then we would experience heavenly contemplation.  As it is, we do not force ourselves to overcome our passions and disorderly desires and to follow the path of the Saints and this is our greatest obstacle to contemplation.  As soon as any little difficulty comes our way, we are easily cast down and turn to human consolation."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Pentecost Novena, Day Five



FIFTH DAY (Tuesday, 7th Week of Easter)

Light immortal! Light Divine! Visit Thou these hearts of Thine, And our inmost being fill!

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, bring your redeeming light to all who deny your love, or who have not received the message of our redemption.  May I be a witness who gives flesh to your action in the world.

The Gift of Knowledge
The gift of Knowledge enables the soul to evaluate created things at their true worth--in their relation to God. Knowledge unmasks the pretense of creatures, reveals their emptiness, and points out their only true purpose as instruments in the service of God. It shows us the loving care of God even in adversity, and directs us to glorify Him in every circumstance of life. Guided by its light, we put first things first, and prize the friendship of God beyond all else. "Knowledge is a fountain of life to him that possesseth it."

Prayer
Come, O Blessed Spirit of Knowledge, and grant that I may perceive the will of the Father; show me the nothingness of earthly things, that I may realize their vanity and use them only for Thy glory and my own salvation, looking ever beyond them to Thee, and Thy eternal rewards. Amen.


ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

On the danger of being consumed by our passions...



"The reason why the Saints were so perfectly recollected is that they always sought to abstain from worldly desires, leaving themselves free to give their whole heart to God.  But we are absorbed in our own passions and too concerned with passing things.  We seldom overcome even one single fault; we make slow progress and therefore remain cold and indifferent."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Monday, May 18, 2015

Novena to the Holy Spirit in anticipation of Pentecost; Day Four



FOURTH DAY (Monday, 7th Week of Easter)
Thou in toil art comfort sweet, Pleasant coolness in the heat, solace in the midst of woe.

Holy Spirit soul of my soul, lift up the souls who have suffered loss through abortion or contraception, may their fruitfulness and comfort be found in fulfilling your Will in all you set before them.

The Gift of Fortitude By the gift of Fortitude the soul is strengthened against natural fear, and supported to the end in the performance of duty. Fortitude imparts to the will an impulse and energy which move it to under take without hesitancy the most arduous tasks, to face dangers, to trample under foot human respect, and to endure without complaint the slow martyrdom of even lifelong tribulation. "He that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved."
Prayer
Come, O Blessed Spirit of Fortitude, uphold my soul in time of trouble and adversity, sustain my efforts after holiness, strengthen my weakness, give me courage against all the assaults of my enemies, that I may never be overcome and separated from Thee, my God and greatest Good. Amen.


Our Father and Hail Mary once. Glory be 7 times; Act of Consecration; Prayer for the Seven Gifts

ACT OF CONSECRATION TO THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

On my knees I before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

PRAYER FOR THE SEVEN GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
To be recited daily during the Novena

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Spirit to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit on Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You  and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord with the sign of Your true disciples, and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

On maintaining peace...



"We would indeed have peace if we would attend to our affairs.  How can you remain in peace when you deliberately interfere in other people's business and seek worldly occupation with seldom a thought to interior recollection?  The humble and single-hearted are truly blessed and will have abundant peace."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eleven

Friday, May 15, 2015

On beneficial conversation...



"A bad use or neglect of our spiritual progress makes us careless of what we say.  However, devout conversation on spiritual matters is beneficial to the soul, especially when people who are congenial in mind and spirit are drawn together in God."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Ten

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Who are we really connected to?



"But the sad part of it is that all we say and do is for nothing; for the comfort we receive from others hinders us from receiving the comfort that comes from God.  It is better to watch and pray so that we do not waste time in idleness.  If you have leave to speak and it is expedient, then speak of God and of those things which edify."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Ten

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

On gossip and guilty consciences...



"We think that by getting together with others we will be a comfort to one another and find relaxation by discussing the things that burden us; but the end result of all this gossip about things we like or dislike only leaves us with a guilty conscience."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Ten

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Obstacles to the spiritual life...



"Flee as much as possible the company of worldly people.  For discussing worldly matters, no matter how good the intention, is a great obstacle to the spiritual life.  If we are not careful, we can be easily deceived and attracted by the vanity of the world.  Often I regret the things I have said and wished that I had not spent so much time in worldly company."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Ten

Monday, May 11, 2015

On stubbornness...



"I have often heard it said that it is surer to take advice than to give it!  It is good to listen to every person's advice; but when it is sound, to disagree is sheer stubbornness."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Nine

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Set aside your will...



"Therefore, listen to the opinions of others and do not trust too much in your own point of view.  Perhaps you are right, but setting aside your own will and following another out of love for God, you will profit by it."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Nine

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Lay down your will...



"In reality, all of us are inclined to do our own will and agree more readily with those who hold with our views.  But if we want to have the presence of God among us, then we must be willing to give up our own way in order to live in love and harmony with others.  Surely there are no persons so wise that they know everything."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Nine

Thursday, May 7, 2015

On humble obedience...



"Go where you will, but you will never find rest except in humble obedience to the rule of your superior.  Many are deceived by thinking that a change of location will solve their difficulties."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Nine

Obedience



"To be obedient, to live under a superior--not seeking our own way--is great virtue.  It is safer to obey orders than to give them.  Many obey more out of necessity than for charity's sake.  These find it burdensome and complain easily; but they will never have liberty of spirit until they submit wholly to authority for the love of God."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Nine

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Fault lines...



"Have charity for all; but familiarity is unwise.  Sometimes it happens that we know someone only by fame, but when we meet that person we are often disappointed.  And sometimes we think we please others by our presence, when in reality they come to dislike us because of the faults they see in us."

Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eight

Monday, May 4, 2015

"Do not open your heart to everyone, cont…



  …rather associate yourself with those who are humble and have simplicity, who are devout and self-disciplined, talking with them about those things that will edify and strengthen the soul.  Do not be familiar with the opposite sex, but commend to God those who are good.   Desire to be on intimate terms with God and His Angels, but shun the acquaintance of people as much as you can."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter 8

On the company we keep...



"Do not open your heart to everyone, but only to one who is wise, God-fearing, and who can keep your confidence.  Spend little time in the company of young people or with the inexperienced; do not flatter the rich or seek to be in the presence of the great without good reason."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Eight

Sunday, May 3, 2015

On thinking too highly of oneself...



"It will not hurt you to consider yourself worse than others, even if this is not really so; but it will hurt greatly if you prefer yourself above another, although that person might be a great sinner.  A humble person is a peaceful person; but the hearts of the proud are full of envy and resentment."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Seven

Saturday, May 2, 2015

On preserving humility



"Do not consider yourself better than others, for you may be worse in God's sight.  Do not be proud of your good works, for often what pleases us displeases God, Whose judgments differ from the judgments of humans.  Whatever goodness or virtue is in you, believe that your neighbor has better qualities; in this way you will preserve humility."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Seven

Friday, May 1, 2015

What are true riches?



"Do not boast of riches if you have them, or of your important friends; but glory in God only, from Whom all good things come and Who, being the highest good, desires to give us Himself.  Do not boast of beauty of body, which is soon disfigured by illness or age.  Do not be proud of any talents or skills you possess, for in this way you displease God from Whom you have received them."

The Imitation of Christ, Book One, Chapter Seven