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Sunday, 04 March 2012 03:13

Humility and confidence

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In the Psalm 129 also known as 'De Profundis' or prayer of a sinner trusting in the mercies of God we read: 'Out of the depths I have cried to thee, O Lord: Lord, hear my voice. Let thy ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication. If thou, O Lord, wilt mark iniquities: Lord, who shall stand it. For with thee there is merciful forgiveness: and by reason of thy law, I have waited for thee, O Lord. My soul hath relied on his word: My soul hath hoped in the Lord. From the morning watch even until night, let Israel hope in the Lord. Because with the Lord there is mercy: and with him plentiful redemption. And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities. (D-R B). When the Apostles asked Jesus who would be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven He answered this way: 'Amen I say to you, unless you be converted and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven' (Matt 18:3-4). St Therese therefore says in Novissima Verba: 'to remain little, is to acknowledge one's nothingness and to expect everything from the good God, as the child expects everything from its father...even among the poor, a child, while he is very little, is given everything that is necessary, but when he has grown, his father no longer wants to support him, and says 'Go to work now!...You can rely on yourself.' It is that I might never hear those words that I never wanted to grow up, because I felt incapable of earning my own living: eternal life."In spiritual terms when a soul forgets its nothingness, and relies on its own strength, knowledge, initiative, or virtues, God leaves it to itself, and the failures which follow, the falls, the fruitlessness of its works - all reveal its insufficiency. God does not introduce a soul to a higher spiritual life, nor admits it to deeper intimacy with Himself, as long as it is not completely despoiled of all confidence in itself. St Teresa of Jesus, speaking of difficulties in overcoming the last obstacles to her total conversion says: 'I must have failed to put my whole confidence in His Majesty and to have a complete distrust of myself' (Life, 8). St Therese is convinced that 'what pleases Jesus is to see me love my littleness and poverty, the blind hope that I have in His mercy. This is my only treasure' and 'I admit, O Lord, that I am very weak; I have salutary proof of it every day. But You deign to teach me the knowledge which makes me glory in my infirmities. This is a very great grace, and only in it do I find peace and contentment of heart, for now I understand Your ways: You give as God, but You want humility of heart'. (Letters) (credits: based on  'Divine Intimacy' meditations).

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