Continued from yesterday...
Chapter 8. The Principal Duties of the Day
VI. The Problem of Life
Suffering is thought by many to be the great evil of life. Oh, if they could only avoid it!
If they did find a way of avoiding it, that would be the greatest evil of their lives.
All about suffering.
Our Lord has given us a most perfect redemption. He could have dispensed the law of suffering if He so willed. Why does God, being of infinite goodness and mercy, ask us to suffer?
For the simple reason that suffering is a very great grace.
Our suffering is a share, a small but most valuable share, in the Passion of Our Dear Lord.
It is priceless in value if we only accept it and offer it in union with Christ's Passion.
He has suffered unspeakable agonies for each one of us. Are we such arrant cowards as to refuse to suffer a little for Him?
How little gratitude we show for all that He has done for us! The easiest and best way of thanking Him is to offer our daily crosses and trials for love of Him.
The one big trouble about suffering is that we do not know how to suffer. We have no idea of its merits.
The secret is to suffer with patience and serenity. Then suffering loses all its sting, all its bitterness.
If we only remember that it is Our Sweet Lord Himself who asks us to bear these daily trials for love of Him, suffering loses its horrors.
God gives us abundant strength and grace to bear our crosses, if we ask Him.
Many good and pious Christians never think of asking God to help them to bear their crosses! Therefore, their crosses weigh heavily on them.
Our sufferings are the purest gold in our lives. Five minutes' suffering is of greater worth than twenty years of pleasure and happiness.
The Son of God suffered, His Immaculate Mother suffered, the Apostles, the Saints, all God's friends suffered. Suffering therefore must be a great grace.
One of the most lamentable evils in our human lives is that we lose the immense rewards which our sufferings ought to merit.
We fear suffering, we hate it, we revolt. It is not the suffering, but this revolt, that makes suffering unbearable and makes us cross, irritable, peevish. On the other hand, suffering borne patiently brings out all the beautiful traits of our character. It refines us as fire purifies and refines gold.
One fact well worth remembering is that our daily sufferings, the least as well as the greatest, if borne well, merit for us a crown of martyrdom.
A second is that the priceless graces and rewards which our sufferings should bring us are lost if suffering is borne badly.
Consequently, let us remember this about suffering:
1) That it is our share of the Passion of Jesus Christ; therefore, it has indescribable merit.
2) That, if borne with patience for the love of God, it loses all its sting and bitterness.
3) That if we ask God, He will most certainly give us abundant strength to bear the sufferings He sends us.
4) Our sufferings will save us from the fearful pains of Purgatory.
5) Suffering, well borne, makes us saints....
From An Easy Way to Become a Saint
by E. D. M. (1949)
The Catholic Printing Press
With Ecclesiastical Approbation
13th June 1949