2cornucopias

Posts Tagged ‘Cheerfulness’

“Sadness is the end product of selfishness”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2016/03/18 at 12:00 AM
May no one read sadness or sorrow in your face, when you spread in the world around you the sweet smell of your sacrifice: the children of God should always be sowers of peace and joy. (Furrow, 59)

Being children of God, how can we be sad? Sadness is the end product of selfishness. If we truly want to live for God, we will never lack cheerfulness, even when we discover our errors and wretchedness. Cheerfulness finds its way into our life of prayer, so much so that we cannot help singing for joy. For we are in love, and singing is a thing that lovers do.

If we live our lives in this way, we shall be bringing peace to the world. We shall be making God’s service attractive to others, because ‘God loves a cheerful giver’ [1]. Christians are ordinary people, but their hearts overflow with the joy that comes when we set out to fulfil, with the constant help of grace, the will of the Father. Christians don’t see themselves as victims, underrated, or restricted in their behaviour. They walk head on high, because they are men and children of God.

Our faith brings out the full meaning of these human virtues, which no one should ever neglect. Christians should be second to none as human beings. Those who follow Christ are able (not by their own merit but by the grace of God) to communicate to those around them what they at times suspect but cannot quite grasp: that true happiness, a genuine spirit of serving our neighbour, can only come by passing through the Heart of our Redeemer, perfectus Deus, perfectus homo. (Friends of God, 92-93)

[1] 2 Cor 9:7

“Make the lives of others more pleasant.”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/09/11 at 12:00 AM
For as long as you are convinced that others should always live as if they depended on you, and for as long as you delay the decision to serve (to hide yourself and disappear from view), your dealings with your brothers, colleagues and friends will be a constant source of disappointment, ill-humour and pride. (Furrow, 712)

When you find it difficult to do a favour or a service for someone, remember that he or she is a child of God, and that the Lord has asked us to love one another. Furthermore, go deeper into that evangelical precept every day; do not remain on the surface. Draw the right conclusions from it — it is quite easy to do so. Then adapt your conduct, on every occasion, to those requirements. (Furrow, 727)

May you know how to put yourself out cheerfully, discreetly and generously each day, serving others and making their lives more pleasant. To act in this way is to practice the true charity of Jesus Christ. (The Forge, 150)

If we let Christ reign in our soul, we will not become authoritarian. Rather we will serve everyone. How I like that word: service! To serve my king and, through him, all those who have been redeemed by his blood. I really wish we Christians knew how to serve, for only by serving can we know and love Christ and make him known and loved.

And how will we show him to souls? By our example. Through our voluntary service of Jesus Christ, we should be witnesses to him in all our activities, for he is the Lord of our entire lives, the only and ultimate reason for our existence. Then, once we have given this witness of service, we will be able to give instruction by our word. That was how Christ acted. “He began to do and to teach” [1]; he first taught by his action, and then by his divine preaching. (Christ is passing by, 182)

[1] Acts 1:1

“Lord, I don’t know how to pray”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/09/04 at 12:00 AM
If you really want to be a penitent soul – both penitent and cheerful – you must above all stick to your daily periods of prayer, which should be fervent, generous and not cut short. And you must make sure that those minutes of prayer are not done only when you feel the need, but at fixed times, whenever it is possible. Don’t neglect these details. If you subject yourself to this daily worship of God, I can assure you that you will be always happy. (Furrow, 994)

When I see how some people set about the life of piety, which is the way a Christian should approach his Lord, and I find them presenting such an unattractive picture, all theory and formulas, plagued with soulless chanting, better suited to anonymity than to a personal, one to One, conversation with God Our Father (genuine vocal prayer is never anonymous), then I am reminded of Our Lord’s words: ‘When you are at prayer, do not use many phrases, like the heathens, who think to make themselves heard by their eloquence. You are not to be like them; your heavenly Father knows well what your needs are before you ask him.’ A Father of the Church comments on this passage as follows: ‘I understand from this that Christ is telling us to avoid long prayers, not long as regards time but as regards the endless multiplicity of words… For Our Lord himself set us the example of the widow who, by dint of supplication, conquered the resistance of the unjust judge; and the other example of the inconsiderate individual who arrives late at night and who, through insistence more than friendship, gets his friend out of bed (cf Luke 11:5‑8; 18:1‑8). With these two examples, he is telling us to ask constantly, not by composing endless prayers, but rather telling him of our needs with simplicity.’

In any case, if on beginning your meditation you don’t succeed in concentrating your attention so as to be able to talk with God; if you feel dry and your mind seems incapable of expressing a single idea, or your affections remain dull, my advice is that you try to do what I have always tried to do on such occasions: put yourselves in the presence of your Father and tell him this much at least: ‘Lord, I don’t know how to pray. I can’t think of anything to tell you.’ You can be sure that at that very moment you have already begun to pray. (Friends of God, 145)

“Make the lives of others more pleasant”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/05/02 at 9:11 AM
For as long as you are convinced that others should always live as if they depended on you, and for as long as you delay the decision to serve (to hide yourself and disappear from view), your dealings with your brothers, colleagues and friends will be a constant source of disappointment, ill-humour and pride. (Furrow, 712)

When you find it difficult to do a favour or a service for someone, remember that he or she is a child of God, and that the Lord has asked us to love one another. Furthermore, go deeper into that evangelical precept every day; do not remain on the surface. Draw the right conclusions from it — it is quite easy to do so. Then adapt your conduct, on every occasion, to those requirements. (Furrow, 727)

May you know how to put yourself out cheerfully, discreetly and generously each day, serving others and making their lives more pleasant. To act in this way is to practice the true charity of Jesus Christ. (The Forge, 150)

If we let Christ reign in our soul, we will not become authoritarian. Rather we will serve everyone. How I like that word: service! To serve my king and, through him, all those who have been redeemed by his blood. I really wish we Christians knew how to serve, for only by serving can we know and love Christ and make him known and loved.

And how will we show him to souls? By our example. Through our voluntary service of Jesus Christ, we should be witnesses to him in all our activities, for he is the Lord of our entire lives, the only and ultimate reason for our existence. Then, once we have given this witness of service, we will be able to give instruction by our word. That was how Christ acted. “He began to do and to teach” [1]; he first taught by his action, and then by his divine preaching. (Christ is passing by, 182)

[1] Acts 1:1