Being holy means living exactly the way our Father in heaven wants us to live. You will say that it is difficult. It is. The ideal is a very high one. And yet it is also easy. It is within our reach. When a person becomes ill, there may be no appropriate medicine. But in supernatural affairs, it is not like that. The medicine is always at hand. It is Jesus Christ, present in the Holy Eucharist, and he also gives us his grace in the other sacraments which he has established. Let us say again, in word and in action: “Lord, I trust in you; your ordinary providence, your help each day, is all I need.” We do not have to ask God to perform great miracles. Rather, we have to beg him to increase our faith, to enlighten our intellect, and strengthen our will.
– St. Josemariá Escrivá
To say God is within us is to say that we are transcendent. . .He is our center, our term, our completion. . .We must be born again of the Spirit. Without the Spirit we remain flesh which cannot know God. The evolution of the butterfly is a marvelous image of what is meant here. The caterpillar must be “born again.” It must receive an impetus to enable it to be transformed into a butterfly. But it has with it, in its caterpillar state, all the potential for this. Nothing new is added; what is already there is developed. So it is with us. God is our beloved in truth now, but will be so even more truly after long and generous effort and correspondence with his action. Then we are no longer our own, but his.
– Sister Ruth Burrows
What a sad thing it is to see that most people never even bother to think about the reason for their existence, but live as if they believe themselves created only to build houses, plant trees, cultivate the garden, pile up wealth, or do frivolous things. Consider your own past life. Say, “Lord, what was I thinking of when I was not thinking of you? Whom did I love when I was not loving you?”
– St. Francis de Sales
May your love draw down upon you the mercy of the Lord, and may he let you see that within your soul a saint is sleeping. I shall ask him to make you so open and supple that you will be able to understand and do what he wants you to do. Your life is nothing; it is not even your own. Each time you say “I’d like to do this or that,” you wound Christ, robbing him of what is his. You have to put to death everything within you except the desire to love God. This is not at all hard to do. It is enough to have confidence and to thank the little Jesus for all the potentialities he has placed within you. You are called to holiness, like me, like everyone. Don’t forget.
– Jacques Fesch
God put you into the world to offer your whole life as a sacrifice to him in union with the perfect sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ. He knows the handicaps you started with. Of course he does, because it was he who put them there . . . He meant those handicaps to be the condition of the sacrifice you were to offer to him. When he became man on earth, he might have been the son of an emperor, but he became the son of a carpenter. It wasn’t bad luck. He preferred it that way because it made his sacrifice more perfect. And every disadvantage you started life with is, in the same way, part of his plan. It is to make your sacrifice to him more perfect.
– Monsignor Ronald Knox
Let us be especially grateful to God for the gift of faith, a gift which is mainly instilled in us at Baptism. . .We must remember that faith is the greatest gift that God has made to man on this earth, because from earthly man he becomes a citizen of Heaven. But let us guard this great gift jealously. Woe to him who forgets himself, who forgets Heaven, whose faith grows weak, and worse still, may God preserve us all, who denies his faith. This is the greatest affront that man can make to God. Attention, then. Let us pray to God to preserve this gift in us as the most precious thing he has granted us.
– St. Pio of Pietrelcina
When someone has lived most of his or her life in the last place and then discovers that Jesus is there in the last place as well, it is truly good news. However, when someone has always been looking for the first place and learns that Jesus is in the last place, it is confusing! . . .Yes, the broken and the oppressed have taught me a great deal and have changed me quite radically. They have helped me discover that healing takes place at the bottom of the ladder, not at the top. Their cry for communion has taught me something about my own humanity, my own brokenness – that we are all wounded, we are all poor. But we are all the people of God; we are all loved and are being guided. They have taught me what it means to be with brothers and sisters in communion, in community. They have revealed to me the well of tenderness that is hidden in my own heart and which can give life to others. The broken and oppressed are teaching me what the good news is really about.
– Jean Vanier
Remember that your soul is a temple of the living God. The kingdom of God is within you. Night and day let your aim be to remain in simplicity and gentleness, calmness and serenity, and in freedom from created things, so that you will find your joy in the Lord Jesus. Love silence and solitude, even when in the midst of a crowd or when caught up in your work. Physical solitude is a good thing, provided that it is backed up by prayer and a holy life, but far better than this is solitude of the heart, which is the interior desert in which your spirit can become totally immersed in God, and can hear and savor the words of eternal life. With great purity of intention, aim in everything to do what pleases God. Always remain faithful to God and genuinely accept whatever he wishes.
– St. Paul of the Cross
“Today’s Reflection” is now in paperback:
Prayer never touches us as long as it remains on the surface of our lives, as long as it is nothing but one more of the thousand things that must be done. It is only when prayer becomes “the one thing necessary” that real prayer begins . . . We are called upon to live Christ’s life. We are called into the desert . . . We are called to face God alone in the night of our own solitude. We are called to die with Jesus, in order to live with him. We are asked to lose all, to be emptied out, in order to be filled with the very fullness of God . . . Christianity is much more than an expression of brotherly love couched in religious terms. It is essential that each person make some kind of personal response to God in Christ.
– James Finley
Coming to Mass on Sunday is to come to make our alliance with God real. Each Sunday Mass is living the alliance that teaches me to respect God . . . Facing Him, I have to dethrone all of the idols that want to take God’s place in my heart: the idols of power, of wealth, of licentiousness – the idols of all of these things that separate men from God. Sunday has to be for us, the alliance with the Lord that is renewed.
– Archbishop Oscar Romero