Moments of Love with Mary
– The Spiritual Letter Box –
If I write this evening, it is to say THANK YOU with all my soul. May the Lord reward you a hundredfold.
I have just lived through a year of sickness which was for me a year of grace, purification and conversion. Pain and physical impotence thwarted my natural need for activity and, at the same time, made me feel alone and destitute before God.
Moreover, the weekly visit of a holy priest was for me, light and strength. This priest, while remaining in obscurity, has the gift of bringing us into contact with the mercy of Christ. He brings us to Christ acting in our soul, then disappears discreetly in order to be forgotten, leaving us alone before the One who is All. This is why, during the year I have just lived, I tasted moments of profound sweetness, and even the desire of seeing God soon. A year of grace! A year when the best days of hope were abruptly followed by disillusioning relapses in which the bewildered heart puts a check upon the whole of one’s being.
A year of grace!… I don’t know what tomorrow will bring to this heavy body that often betrays me, but I know that, today, I am happy, very happy, profoundly happy. I must learn “to wait for Him to speak”, learn to keep quiet in order to listen to Him. There is too much noise inside me. He is still not free to act as He wants. Pray for me.
To the expression of my liveliest gratitude for your Review which is so rich, I add the assurance of my admiration.
You are “happy, profoundly happy” because you accept in pure faith, the cross that God offers you, without trying to understand, knowing that God’s designs, with regard to each one of us, are projects of love.
You are “happy”, not because you are gripped or paralyzed by suffering, but because a well-accepted cross brings profound peace, interior joy, a soothing balm, the sweetness of which is equalled only by the increasingly ardent love for God and souls. TO LOVE: that is the beauty of a true life. The one who truly loves wishes to lead souls to God, because God is LOVE.
Thus, on the one hand, in the silence of your heart, in the loving offering of your daily cross, you lead souls towards God, and your own always rises higher. Elizabeth LeSeur said: “The more a soul elevates itself, the more it elevates the world.”
On the other hand, you have the remarkable happiness of receiving the good counsels of a holy priest who helps you to ascend towards God, without drawing attention to himself. This is a true director, the true spiritual guide who directs a soul, totally given to God, towards an ascetic and mystical life for its full blossoming. How beautiful this is! This priest corroborates the teaching of Saint John of the Cross, which is always vital and more necessary than ever because many souls thirst for the divine, for the supernatural.
At a time when every means is being used to reduce man’s personality to its simple human dimension, you bring eloquent testimony of far-reaching spirituality which promotes the full growth of the human being in spite of physical deficiencies, in spite of “the days of hope which are followed by disillusioning relapses in which the bewildered heart puts a check upon the whole of one’s being.”
An astonishing contrast, yes, but a reality of life on earth where man goes along, sometimes bent down under the redemptive cross, sometimes uplifted with joy and love because the soul is purified, relieved of “self”, and more possessed by Christ who is LOVE.
This intense happiness invites one to solitude, to silence, because it is in the silence of one’s heart that the contact with God is established. Does this mean that one must retire and withdraw constantly from everything? No. It is advisable to live one’s everyday life according to the demands of one’s state of life, in communion of soul with Christ. To find Him again during work, prayer, sickness or relaxation, is to replenish one’s provision of peace, joy and love. To renew often this recourse to God, is to LIVE OF LOVE in profound joy, in spite of the vicissitudes of life.
(Review, “L’Armée de Marie”, volume IV, no. 6)