Evening Meditations for the Sixteenth Saturday After Pentecost~ St Alphonsus Liguori

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

Evening Meditation

CONSIDERATIONS ON THE PASSION OF JESUS CHRIST

I.

Be assured, St. Paul wrote to his disciples, that God is faithful, Who will not suffer you to be tempted above what you are able. God has promised to give us sufficient help to conquer every temptation, if only we ask Him. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find (Matt. vii. 7). He cannot, therefore, fail of His promise. It is a fatal error of the heretics to say that God commands things which it is impossible for us to observe. The Council of Trent teaches: God does not command impossible things; but when he commands, he bids us do what we can, and seek help for what we cannot do, and he will help us that we may be able. St. Ephrem writes: “If men do not put upon their beasts a greater burden than they can bear, much less does God lay greater trials upon men than they can endure.”

Thomas a Kempis writes: “The cross everywhere awaits thee; it is needful for thee everywhere to preserve patience, if thou wouldst have peace. If thou willingly bearest the Cross, it will bear thee to thy desired end.” In this world we all of us go about seeking peace, and would find it without suffering; but this is not possible in our present state; we must suffer; the cross awaits us wherever we turn.

II.

How, then, can we find peace in the midst of these crosses? By patience, by embracing the cross which presents itself to us. St. Teresa says that “he who drags the cross along feels its weight, however small it is; but he who willingly embraces it and carries it, however great it is, does not feel it.”

The same Thomas a Kempis says: “Which of the Saints is without a cross? The whole life of Christ was a cross and a martyrdom, and dost thou seek for pleasure?” Jesus, so innocent, so holy, and the Son of God, was willing to suffer through His whole life, and shall we go in search of pleasures and comforts? To give us an example of patience He chose a life full of ignominies and pains within and without; and shall we wish to be saved without suffering, or shall we suffer without patience, which is a double suffering, and without fruit, which only increases our pain? How can we pretend to be lovers of Jesus Christ if we will not suffer for love of Him Who has suffered so much for love of us? How can he glory in being a follower of the Crucified who refuses or receives with the fruits of the cross, which are sufferings, contempt, poverty, pains, infirmities, and all things contrary to our self-love?

Leave a Reply