Have you ever noticed how edifying it is to pray for those who cause you trouble (whether they realize they are causing you trouble or not) — how it cushions you and quenches fiery darts, including praying for those who do know they cause you agitation?
This bring such Grace: When we pray for those who “curse” us, we really gain spiritual momentum.
A bubble of protection forms. We have insights into others. We understand where antagonists are coming from. This takes more strength and courage than always lashing back.
When we pray for others, we become less agitated. (Actually, all agitation disappears, if we practice this enough).
Is that not a motivation? Christ gave us a way to eliminate aggravation!
When the mind moves to a person, or when we see someone and are prone to a “negative first thought,” we should get in the habit of praying for his or her greatest need.
It’s all about “first thoughts”: Learn to control yours and Grace will abound.
Once more, it comes down to discipline: Instead of noticing that someone is overweight or loud or poorly dressed or rude, pray for what they need most and you add light to God’s Creation.
When you see strangers, make a hobby out of praying for what they may need most (the Holy Spirit will guide you).
This takes practice and, when it comes to antagonists, humility.
Humility is critical and especially so in the current era of pride (when egos are so huge and rampant).
It has become fashionable to be arrogant but arrogance is certain to distance you from God.
That’s because arrogance is pride and pride is the great sin, the territory, of Satan, “prince of pride,” who has a a “legal right” to whatever part of your spiritual turf exhibits haughtiness of any kind (and there are many!).
To be humble does not mean thinking less of yourself but thinking of yourself less.
The secure way to true piety?
Distrusting self, says a remarkable revelation called The Secrets of Purgatory; ridding worldly attachments; trusting Jesus only.
“The burning desire to do everything just as Jesus wants it makes the soul pure and stainless,” it says. “Those souls are quickest to enter heaven who quickly sense their sins, who are not obstinately taken up with their own self-conceit. Poor souls must become ‘poor’ in their inner self. Then they can understand our Savior better.”
Pride, along with division, is a first hallmark of the evil one. So is confusion. Humility casts it out!
There’s a difference between holy self-love (loving ourselves, as well as others) and sinful self-love (which expresses itself in arrogance — loving yourself above all others, instead of your neighbor as yourself).
Jesus told us to take up our cross every day and that can mean dying to self each day — nailing the wrong type of self-love to the Cross and crucifying the flesh, so to speak.
Look at the word “mortgage.” It’s from ancient Latin: mort indicating death and gage meaning pledge.
Every time we crucify the flesh, every day we carry a cross — every day we rid the wrong kind of self — we are making mortgage “payments.” If we don’t, we owe a lot at the end.
What we owe, in other words, is paid in purgatory.
We’ve had a lot on purgatory during the past week. There is much to say. But there is a great way to purge here on earth.
How it leads to holiness!
No true saint was without it.
Beauty comes from truth and truth comes with humility (our blinders lift) and humility opens our souls to unleash the force of Heaven: love.
No matter what you look like in worldly, fleshly terms, if you love your beauty is transcendental, reaching to eternity.
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