December 14---St. John of the Cross
St. John of the Cross ( 1542-1591) was a contemporary of St. Theresa of Avila and helped her reform the Carmelite order. As a mystic, confessor and doctor of the Church, he was unparalleled in his teachings on the spiritual life. It is key to consider the maxims he has left us.
Trifling thoughts are not compatible with lofty thoughts.
Consider the conversations, advertisements and media content today. Can one be nurtured on this and yet be holy? Since the grandeur of God is incompatible with trifles, we must choose one or the other. Either choice has BIG consequences.
To be with God is to want what He wants -- His interests -- His will on earth as it is in Heaven. To be with trifles is self explanatory.
Vigilance: to see evil clearly, to discern its wiles and deny its "right " to exist opens the door to true and holy recollection. This attitude puts fear into the devil because he sees that a person with such attitude has God’s Spirit.
Those who suffer calmly and without artifice gain great understanding; they can reach the highest and noblest part of reality. To accept suffering in this way makes one’s soul, will, intelligence and sensibility more perfect and brings one closer to God.
Small faults left unchecked develop quickly to enormous sins which are very difficult to overcome.
Except for Our Lady, all men are conceived with original sin which makes the soul tend to evil. Man is dependent on supernatural grace to fight against his bad tendencies.
Without recourse to Our Lady and the sacraments, a small vice easily reaches extreme evil with dire consequences. This principle is observed in history -- Louis XVI did stop the first explosive steps of the French Revolution and in consequence he lost his head.
Meditate on these soul saving principles. Ask Our Lady to nurture them in your soul.