30 September 2012

St Therese, coffee, and what in the world.

As many of you know, St Therese is my personal patroness who has lead to my reversion in the Faith. Although I still have a long long way to go to catch up in holiness, it's always good to try. I'd like to take a deeper look at the following quote

"I understood that to become a saint one had to suffer much, seek out always the most perfect thing to do, and forget self. I understood, too, that there are many degrees of perfection and each soul was free to respond to the advances of the Our Lord, to do little or much for Him, in a word, to choose among the sacrifices He was asking. Then, as in the days of my childhood, I cried out: 'My God I choose all!' I do not want to be a saint by halves. I'm not afraid to suffer for You. I fear only one thing: to keep my own will; so take it, for I choose all that You will!"

St Therese here is talking about suffering, and I figured today is a good of day as any to look at that. To say that our lives are supposed to be easy, that has to be the biggest joke ever. All we need to do is look at the life of Christ to understand this....The way of the Cross is by far the most brutal that any person has ever undergone...

My own suffering is nothing in comparison to the Cross, really it's nothing. All the suffering that I undergo is purification, on the road to perfection. And since I suffer a ton, I must be really imperfect, or God wants to do something great with me....(I guess being a mathematician and physicist isn't enough)...

As I say often enough, if you're going to do something, do it well, do it fully, and do so to the best of your ability. I do not believe in half efforts, or half being something. There are many things which I struggle to deal with, but it'sn not about giving up and resigning. 

Suffering for Christ is better than drowning in misery and pointless work....St Therese and I have many things in common, probably the biggest one was that we have our moments of "you didn't just say that." or as some say, very good one liners. If I ever let students record me in lecture, I'm sure you'll get to hear some of the things I have to say. (My self recorded lectures are quite different in tone). She of course was also a perfectionist, just like yours truly....

Suffering is not pointless, we must unite it to Christ's Cross and use the merits of the Cross for the salvation of our souls, and indeed for the hope of the salvation of all.

In today's Gospel reading in the OF we hear the following: 

At that time, John said to Jesus,
"Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name,
and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow us."
Jesus replied, "Do not prevent him.
There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name
who can at the same time speak ill of me.
For whoever is not against us is for us.
Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink
because you belong to Christ, 
amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward.

"Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin,
it would be better for him if a great millstone
were put around his neck
and he were thrown into the sea.
If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.
It is better for you to enter into life maimed
than with two hands to go into Gehenna,
into the unquenchable fire.
And if your foot causes you to sin, cut if off.
It is better for you to enter into life crippled
than with two feet to be thrown into Gehenna.
And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out.
Better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye
than with two eyes to be thrown into Gehenna,
where 'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'"

Suffering is a means of purification. This of course may take many forms. Good thing that we don't take the Bible literally, otherwise we'd have 100% of the population without hands, feet, or even eyes. The point of this passage obviously, is to say, if something that you're doing is NOT leading you to heaven, and to the Cross, you should change that behaviour or attitude. I know that I have many things to change about myself....(some of them I have no control over)...but those that I do have control over, are in the constant need of reformation. Living the life of the Cross is a daily life style, one that I'm sure all of us need a bit of help in living....

b. Coffee

Is apparently what I got myself into this evening. I hope that it goes well. I try to not make myself a nervous wreck, seems to manage to happen though. Good thing chocolate is a great bribery tool :p....

I wish all of you the most blessed solemnity of St Therese :)....and welcome to my favorite month of the year....(Ugh, and 15 days until my 27th birthday)

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