Mortification

“I will be to them as one that taketh off the yoke.” -Osee 11:4 I shall now speak of those means that may help us to render this necessary practice of mortification not only easy, but pleasant. The first means is the grace of God, with which all things become easy. St. Paul supplies us…

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On Work and Doing Ordinary Actions Well

“Whatsoever ye do, do it from the heart as to the Lord.” -Colossians 3:23 Follow justly that which is just (Deut. 16:20), says Our Lord in Deuteronomy to His elect people. It is not sufficient for our advancement and perfection that we simply perform our actions; we must likewise perform them well. “He hath done…

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Advancement in Holiness

“Not as though I had already attained.” -Philippians 3:12 It is a common maxim of all the Saints that not to advance in the way of God is to go back.  Who is there that, after having travelled homeward several days, would feel inclined to go back, particularly when he calls to mind the sentence…

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Sins of Habit

“Let not sin reign in your mortal body.” -Romans 6:12 It is a great evil to accustom ourselves to evil.  A habit of sinning is a fatal chain which binds the soul and renders it a slave to crime.  It blinds the spirit, hardens the heart, stifles the voice of conscience and gives a death-blow…

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Resignation to the Divine Will

“My meat is to do the will of Him that sent me.”  -John 4:34 So said Jesus Christ, speaking of Himself.  In this mortal life, “meat” is that which preserves our life, and therefore Our Lord said that it was His meat to do the will of the Father.  This also ought to be the…

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The Shortness of Life

“What is your life?  It is a vapour, which appeareth for a little while.” -James 4:15 What is your life?  It is like a vapor, which is dispersed by a breath of wind and is no more.  All know that they must die, but many are deceived by picturing to themselves death at such a…

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Distrust of Ourselves Under Temptation

“The Lord is the protector of all that trust in Him.” -Psalm 17:31 One of the best means of overcoming temptations is to distrust ourselves and to place all our confidence in God, for as the Scripture notices in several places, it is this which chiefly moves Him to assist us in our temptations and…

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God Deserves to be Supremely Loved

“Let us therefore love God because He first hath loved us.”  -1 John 4:19 St. Teresa said that it was a great favor that God should call a soul to love Him.  Let us then love Him, since we are called to this love, and let us love Him as He desires to be loved. …

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Desire for Spiritual Things

“They that eat Me shall yet hunger, and they that drink Me shall yet thirst.”  -Ecclesiasticus 24:29 St. Gregory tells us that there is this difference between the pleasures of the body and the pleasures of the soul, that we desire the former with great impatience when we have them not, and when we have…

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True Peace Found in God Alone

“Peace, because we have hoped in Thee.” -Isaias 26:3 He that seeks peace in creatures will never find it, because no creatures are fitted for giving satisfaction to the heart. God has created man for Himself, who is the Infinite Good; wherefore, God alone can content him. Hence it comes that many persons, though loaded…

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Easter Meditation: Christ Was Made Sin for Us

“The joy being set before Him, He endured the cross.” -Hebrews 12:2 When the Divine Word offered Himself to redeem mankind, there were before Him two ways of redemption – the one of joy and glory, the other of pains and insults. It was His will, not only by His coming to deliver man from…

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Patience in Temptation

“Our adversary, the devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking whom he may devour.” -1 Peter 5:8 Do we enjoy the inestimable blessing of being in the state of grace? Have we succeeded in casting out from our hearts the enemy of our souls? Then let us be prepared to encounter a fierce combat,…

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The Christian’s Aim

“I show you a more excellent way.” -1 Corinthians 12:31 It will conduce much to our spiritual advancement that we propose to ourselves as objects the highest things and such as are of the greatest perfection, according to the counsel of the Apostle: “Be zealous for the better gifts.  And I yet show to you…

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The Necessity of Prayer

“Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you.” -Matthew 6:7 A man cannot take the smallest step in the way of divine love unless he is supported by divine grace.  We are able of ourselves to enter into the way of perdition…

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The Necessary Practice of Mortification

“But you, know by experience that our cross is truly full of unction, whereby it is not only light, but all the bitterness and hardship we find in our state is, by the grace of God, rendered sweet and pleasant.” -St. Bernard I shall now speak of those means that may help us to render…

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The Value of Spiritual Reading

“I will consider the wondrous things of Thy law.” -Psalm 118:18 Spiritual reading is a great help to prayer, and it is on this account that St. Paul, writing to Timothy, recommended to him “to attend to reading” (1 Tim. 4:13).  St. Athanasius esteems it so necessary for one who would walk in the path…

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