“The secret of happiness is to live moment by moment and to thank God for what He is sending us every day in His Goodness.” St. Gianna Beretta Molla
Some interesting events happened around me recently. I got my annual evaluation at work. I only began working there recently and I have found a new home. My director has been quite happy with my work, and he asked me what I thought about my work. I was of course happy, but I told him how difficult some employers have been for me over the years. He was very complimentary towards me. I was grateful. My mom has been going to her parish for some time. She has been taking care of family for a long time and the people in the parish have noticed. A while back, some women of the parish gifted her a quilt that was handmade. They wanted to say thank you for what a great example she is. Then recently, a man from the parish whom she did not know came to her after mass and said, “Here is 50 dollars for all you do and spend it on the people you care for.” Flabbergasted, she told the man that he would be better giving the money to the St. Vincent de Paul Society instead of her because they really need the money and not her. She recounted this story to me in tears.
“When it comes to life the critical thing is whether you take things for granted or take them with gratitude.” GK Chesterton
Today is the feast of Ste. Therese of Lisieux. Such a simple woman who became a great saint. I have visited Lisieux, and it is a remarkable place but more importantly, the story is something that can be read repeatedly. I visit the Carmelite Monastery near my home often. They are great examples of Christian witness. Therese wanted to be a nun so badly that she asked Pope Leo XIII and she entered at 15. Her short life became an example for all of us. Therefore, we need these saints as witnesses. They endured hardship yet stayed faithful to Christ even in the most difficult of circumstances.
“Jesus does not demand great actions from us but simply surrender and gratitude.” Ste. Therese of Lisieux
Christ had never promised an easy life. He has promised to be with us. No one wants to suffer. I can always read about the early Christians who suffered for their faith; it was on the blood of these martyrs that the early Church flourished. The recognition of these great martyrs can sometimes be overlooked but it is important that we remember constantly the love Christ has for his people – for each one of us. He wants all of us to be saved.
“Gratitude for suffering is a precious jewel for our heavenly crown…. Man should always firmly believe that God sends just that trial which is most beneficial for Him.” St. Gertrude the Great
We live in an era where suffering is to be avoided. We look for the easy way and we hope the Lord will lift us out of our misery and make the road easy. Our Heavenly Father does not eliminate our struggles, but he is teaching us. Sometimes the teaching is difficult, but we cannot relent and think we know better. Being anchored in Christ is the only way for me. I would not know where else to turn.
“Everything, even sweeping, scraping vegetables, weeding a garden and waiting on the sick could be a prayer, if it were offered to God.” St. Martin de Porres