From Matins today:
My son, hold fast to your duty, busy yourself with it,
grow old while doing your task.
Admire not how sinners live,
but trust in the Lord and wait for his light;
For it is easy with the Lord
suddenly, in an instant, to make a poor man rich.
God’s blessing is the lot of the just man,
and in due time his hopes bear fruit.
Say not: “What do I need?
What further pleasure can be mine?”
Say not: “I am independent.
What harm can come to me now?”
The day of prosperity makes one forget adversity;
the day of adversity makes one forget prosperity.
For it is easy with the Lord on the day of death
to repay man according to his deeds.
A moment’s affliction brings forgetfulness of past delights;
when a man dies, his life is revealed.
Call no man happy before his death,
for by how he ends, a man is known.
From Matins today —
Lord, we entreat you to help us. Come to the aid of the afflicted, pity the lowly, raise up the fallen, show your face to the needy, heal the sick, convert the wayward, feed the hungry, deliver the captives, support the weak, encourage the fainthearted. Let all nations know that you alone are God; Jesus Christ is your Son, and we are your people and the sheep of your pasture.
“And yet – this is the other and equally important side of it – this Helper who will, in the long run, be satisfied with nothing less than absolute perfection, will also be delighted with the first feeble, stumbling effort you make tomorrow to do the simplest duty… Every father is pleased at the baby’s first attempt to walk: no father would be satisfied with anything less than a firm, free, manly walk in grown-up son. In the same way…..‘God is easy to please, but hard to satisfy’ (p. 202-3).” Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you
does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road,
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always though
I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
“And if we took the third chance instance, it would be the same; the view that priests darken and embitter the world. I look at the world and simply discover that they don’t. Those countries in Europe which are still influenced by priests, are exactly the countries where there is still singing and dancing and coloured dresses and art in the open-air. Catholic doctrine and discipline may be walls; but they are the walls of a playground” GK Chesterton, Orthodoxy
“If you’re fighting a battle in the Church — whether it’s ideological, liturgical, political, cultural — and you hate your opponent, you’ve already lost the battle” – Fr Denis Robinson, OSB