Thoughts on the Patient Endurance of Sorrows and Sufferings
CONFORMITY TO THE WILL OF GOD
One day, St. Gertrude, in ascending a hill, fell. Meeting nothing to arrest the fall, she soon reached the bottom of the hill. Providence miraculously preserved her life, and she was not even injured. Her companions asked her whether she was not afraid she might have died without the last sacraments. "No," she replied. "I desire certainly to receive the last sacraments before death, but I desire more ardently that the will of God be accomplished. This is the best disposition in which to be found at the hour of death."
God's providence rules and guides all things. He has not flung this world of ours into space to take its chance; but all nature, from the highest to the lowest forms in it, is under His constant control, everything that happens being ordered for the divine glory abd the ultimate good of His faithful servants. "We know that to them that love God all things work together unto good" (Roman viii. 28). The sufferings of this life, no matter whence they come, bring home to us as nothing else can, the wretchedness of our fallen state, the gravity of sin, the worthlessness of earthly happiness, and so make us long for that better land "where the wicked cease from troubling and the weary are at rest" (Job, iii. 17). Moreover, by accepting these afflictions in atonement for our sins, we can purify our souls and shorten our purgation hereafter.
Lastly, it is only along the Way of the Cross that we can tread in our Master's footsteps and find Him in eternal joy. "Through many tribulations we must enter into the kingdom of God" (Acts xiv. 21).
Compiled and Edited by Rev. F. X. Lasance
Author of "My Prayerbook," etc.
1937, Benziger Brothers
Printers to the Holy Apostolic See