CONFORMITY TO THE WILL OF GOD
VII. GOD WISHES ONLY OUR GOOD.
What greater satisfaction can a soul enjoy than in knowing that by suffering with a good will whatever it may have to suffer, it gives to God the greatest pleasure it can give Him? The masters of the spiritual life teach that, though the desire which certain souls have of suffering to give God pleasure is acceptable to Him, He is yet more pleased with the conformity of those who wish for neither joy nor pain, but, in perfect resignation to His holy will, have no other desire than to fulfill whatever the will of God may be.
If, then, O devout soul, you would please God, and live a life of contentment, unite yourself always and in everything to the Divine will. Consider that all the sins you have committed, when leading a life of disorder and unhappiness, have come to pass in consequence of having separated yourself from the will of God. Unite yourself from this day forward, with His good pleasure; and always say, in everything that may befall you: Yea, Father; for so hath it seemed good in thy sight (Matt. xi. 26). So may it be, O Lord, as it is pleasing unto Thee. Whenever you are troubled on account of some adversity, consider that it has come from God; and therefore say at once: “God wills it so” — and remain in peace. I was dumb, and I opened not my mouth, because thou hast done it (Ps. xxxviii. 10). To this end you must direct all your thoughts and prayers to God, in Meditations, in Communions, in Visits to the Most Holy Sacrament, that He would make you accomplish His will. Strive to make continually an offering of yourself, saying: O my God, behold, here I am; do what Thou willest with me, and with all that I have. This was St. Teresa’s continual exercise; fifty times a day at least did the Saint offer herself to the Lord, that He might dispose of her according to His pleasure.
Oh, happy will you be if you act ever thus! You will certainly become a saint; your life will be peaceful, and your death most happy. When any one is passing to the other life, our hopes of his salvation depend on whether he has died resigned or not. If, after having during life welcomed all things as coming from God, you in like manner embrace death also in order to accomplish the Divine will, you will certainly secure your salvation and die the death of a saint. Let us, then, abandon ourselves in everything to the good pleasure of that Lord Who, being most wise, knows what is best for us; and being most loving, since He has sacrificed His life through love of us, wills also that which is most for our good. Let us be thoroughly assured and convinced that God works for our good incomparably beyond all we can do or desire for ourselves.