THE PRACTICE OF THE LOVE OF JESUS CHRIST
XXXIII.-“CHARITY ENVIETH NOT “-HE THAT LOVES JESUS DOES NOT ENVY THE GREAT ONES OF THE WORLD, BUT ONLY THOSE WHO ARE GREATER LOVERS OF JESUS CHRIST.
The following are the signs which indicate whether we work solely for God in any spiritual undertaking.
1.-If we are not disturbed at the failure of our plans, because when we see it is not God’s will, neither is it any longer our will.
2.-If we rejoice at the good done by others as heartily as if we ourselves had done it.
3.-If we have no preference for one charge more than another, but willingly accept that which obedience to superiors enjoins on us.
4.-If after our actions we do not seek the thanks or approbation of others, nor are in any way affected. if we be found fault with or scolded, being satisfied in having pleased God.
And if when the world applauds us we are not puffed up, but meet the vainglory, which might make itself felt, with the reply of the Blessed John of Avila: “Begone! Thou comest too late, for all has been already given to God.” This is to enter into the joy of the Lord; that is, to enjoy the enjoyment of God, as is promised to His faithful servants: Well done, thou good and faithful servant; because thou hast been faithful over a few things .. enter thou into the joy of thy Lord-(Matt. xxv. 23).
And if it falls to our lot to do something pleasing to God, what more, asks St. John Chrysostom, can we desire? “If thou art found worthy to perform something that pleases God, dost thou seek other recompense than this?” The greatest reward, the brightest fortune that can befall a creature is to give pleasure to his Creator.
And this is what Jesus Christ looks for from a soul that loves Him: Put me, He says, as a seal upon thy heart, as a seal upon thy arm-(Cant. viii. 6). He desires us to place Him as a seal on our heart and on our arm : on our heart, in order that whatever we intend doing we may intend solely for the love of God; on our arm, in order that, whatever we do, all may be done to please God; so that God may be always the sole end of all our thoughts and of all our actions. St. Teresa said that he who would become a Saint must live free from every other desire than that of pleasing God; and her first daughter, the Venerable Beatrice of the Incarnation, said: “Nothing whatever could repay the slightest thing done for God.” And with reason; for all things done to please God are acts of Charity which unite us with God, and obtain for us everlasting rewards.