Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

That Old, Royal Road of our Fathers

(9) The present moment is an ever-flowing source of holiness. 
Are we thirsty? Then we have not far to go to find the fountain of living water. It bubbles up near us at every moment. How foolish it is to tire ourselves by searching for tiny rivulets which can never quench our thirst. Only the fountain can satisfy us. It is inexhaustible. Do you want to think, write and live like prophets, apostles and saints? Then you must surrender, as they did, to the inspirations of God. 
O unknown Love! It would seem that all your wonders are over and done with and that there is nothing left to do but copy your old works and repeat your utterances of the past. We do not see that your activity can ever be exhausted and that it is an endless source of fresh thoughts, new sufferings, new deeds, a source of new patriarchs, prophets, apostles and saints who have no need to copy anything written and done before their time but simply spend their lives in continual abandonment of themselves to your hidden guidance. We are always hearing of "the early centuries" and "the days of the saints." What a way to speak! Surely we must realize that in every age including this one, God's will works through every moment, making each one holy and giving it a supernatural quality. Cn we imagine that in the days of old there was a secret method of abandoning oneself to the divine will that is now out of date? And had the saints of those early times any other secret apart from that of obeying God's will from moment to moment? And will not God continue until the end of the world to pour out his grace upon all the souls who utterly abandon themselves to him?  
O adorable Love, eternal, ever fruitful and ever marvelous! You give me all the knowledge and learning I need. You embrace all I think, say, do and suffer. I shall not become what you want me to be by studying your earlier works, but only by welcoming you in all things. By following that old, royal road of our fathers, I shall be enlightened and shall think and speak as they did. That is the way I want to imitate, quote and copy all of them. 
--Jean-Pierre de Caussade, Abandonment to Divine Providence
Too often it seem like when I'm engaged in some important work, or spiritual practice, or just trying to get through my daily life, some trial or obstacle is dropped in the middle of my path. And I get frustrated and feel like I've been wronged. I was doing so well until this thing came along! Why can't I just get anything done? And I miss the point -- the goal is not that I should have an unbroken path to success in my projects or my daily routine. The goal is that I do the will of God at each moment, which means accepting the trial or roadblock as God's will for that moment. It's true that things need to get done, but I don't have a God-given right to do things the easiest way possible, or the way I think would be best. What I see as a nuisance or an actively destructive situation is God's will for me at that moment, and my only path to holiness.

How I deal with that may vary. The problem I face may demand that I adjust my own will, that I accept the roadblock, that I confront an injustice, that I take a stand, that I embrace suffering, that I turn in some new direction. The only thing I may not do is sin.

1 comment:

Tito Edwards said...

Doing God's will, sounds so easy, yet so difficult at times.