Life is a journey; the choices you make now will determine your eternal destination.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Some thoughts to start the New Year off

As we begin another year, many folks look back on everything that happened to them over the passing year. Sometimes it's easy to focus on the things that made us unhappy or sad, and the good things get lost. Dwelling on misery is not good for the soul; but our human nature cries out for solace- a loving word, a sympathetic listener, anything that validates our emotional turmoil.
Spiritual reading and attending daily Mass are the best ways I know of to turn your mind away from your own woes. Lift yourself up to God, and he will make your burdens light.
These excerpts from "The Imitation of Christ" (in red) put it well:

When thou art troubled and afflicted then is the time to merit.
Thou must pass through fire and water before thou comest to refreshment.(Ps. LXV 12)
Unless thou do violence to thyself thou wilt not overcome vice.
As long as we carry about this frail body we cannot be without sin nor live without uneasiness and sorrow.
We would fain be at rest from all misery, but because we have lost innocence by sin we have also lost true happiness.

Even,and especially, our woes can work to our spiritual advancement if we do not dwell on them. It is a hard thing to think that God gives us burdens because He loves us and wants our eternal happiness.

Many follow Jesus to the breaking of the bread, but few to the drinking of the chalice of His Passion.
Many reverence His miracles, but few the ignominy of His Cross.
Many love Jesus as long as they meet with no adversity.
Many praise Him and bless Him as long as they receive consolation from Him.
But if Jesus hide Himself, and leave them for a little while, they either fall into complaints or excessive dejection.
But they that love Jesus for Jesus' sake and not for any comfort of their own, bless Him no less in tribulation and anguish of heart than in the greatest consolation.
And if He should never give them His comfort, yet would they always praise Him and always give Him thanks.

It helps me if I meditate on the Agony in the Garden - how little my burdens become when I think of Our Lord suffering so much for us. I have a little booklet by Padre Pio, The Agony of Jesus - that is a great help.

As we start this new year, I pray that we all love God more deeply, strive to do His Will in our daily life, and offer our joys and our tribulations for His greater glory.


1 comment:

Marilena said...

good advice shirley. very good advice.