Our Lord never asks sacrifices from us beyond our strength. At times, it is true this Divine Savior makes us feel all the bitterness of the chalice that He is offering our soul. When He asks the sacrifice of all that is precious in this world, it is impossible, without a very special grace, not to cry out like Him in the garden of agony: “Father, let this chalice pass from me – but not my will, but Your will be done.” It is very consoling to think that Jesus, the Strong God, knew our weakness, that He trembled at the sight of the bitter chalice, this chalice that He had in the past so ardently desired to drink.
Great deeds are forbidden me. I cannot preach the Gospel nor shed my blood – but what does it matter? Others toil instead of me, and I, a little child, keep close by the throne of God and I love for those who fight. Love proves itself in deeds. I will scatter flowers, perfuming the Divine Throne, and I will sweetly sing my hymn of love. These flowers are every little sacrifice, every glance and word, and the doing of the least of actions for love.
There is one sister in the community who has a knack of rubbing me the wrong way at every turn; her manner, her speech, her character just strikes me as unlovable…I was not going to let this natural antipathy get the better of me. I reminded myself that charity is not a matter of fine feelings; rather it means doing things. So I determined to treat this sister as if she were the person I loved best in the world. When I felt tempted to take her down with an unkind retort, I would put on my best smile instead, and change the subject…when the struggle was too much for me, I would turn tail and run.
Nature seemed to share in my bitter sadness, for during these days, the sun did not shine and the rain poured down in torrents. I have noticed in all the serious circumstances of my life that nature always reflected the image of my soul. On days filled with tears the heavens cried along with me; on days of joy the sun sent forth its joyful rays in profusion, and the blue skies were not obscured by a single cloud.
No doubt, it is a grace to receive the sacraments. When God does not permit it, it is good too! Everything is grace! When I shall have arrived at port, I will teach you how to travel…on the stormy sea of the world: with surrender and the love of a child who knows his Father loves him and cannot leave him alone in the hour of danger…The way of simple love and confidence is really made for you.