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4459Holy Rule for Jan. 23

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  • Br. Jerome Leo
    Jan 22 5:33 PM
      Continued prayers for Rachel, still critically ill.
      Prayers for Kevin: tumor on pancreas and possible liver problems; undergoing tests. Pray that it is something he can handle.
      Deo gratias! The young woman who thought she might have breast cancer was examined again and this time, nothing showed up on the tests! She is sure it was due to all the prayers being said for her! She thanks everyone for their prayers.
      from Fr. Showraiah osb, Vijayawada, India.
      Thanks to all those who have prayed for my sister Jecintha; she is back to home after chemo for cancer in intestines. doctors asked her to come back for further tests for operation. She does not want to go. she believes that she is alright and claims that she is fully alright. Kindly tell our members to continue to pray for her.
      Please pray for Cheryl who was hit by another skier yesterday: knocked unconscious (head MRI OK, though), seven broken ribs, one of which deflated a lung.
      Prayers for Charlette, she has had surgery to remove most of her colon, surrounding lymph nodes, and other things. Test back on Friday to see what is going on and if they got all of it.
      Prayers for Adelaide's son, special intention.
      Prayers for Kasey, on her birthday, graces and blessings and many more.

      Lord, help us all as You know and will. God's will is best. All is
      mercy and grace. God is never absent, praise Him! Thanks so much. JL

      January 23, May 24, September 23
      Chapter 5: On Obedience

      But this very obedience
      will be acceptable to God and pleasing to all
      only if what is commanded is done
      without hesitation, delay, lukewarmness, grumbling, or objection.
      For the obedience given to Superiors is given to God,
      since He Himself has said,
      "He who hears you, hears Me" (Luke 10:16).
      And the disciples should offer their obedience with a good will,
      for "God loves a cheerful giver" (2 Cor. 9:7).
      For if the disciple obeys with an ill will
      and murmurs,
      not necessarily with his lips but simply in his heart,
      then even though he fulfill the command
      yet his work will not be acceptable to God,
      who sees that his heart is murmuring.
      And, far from gaining a reward for such work as this,
      he will incur the punishment due to murmurers,
      unless he amend and make satisfaction.


      It is our hearts that convict us in obedience. Not because of
      feelings or emotions, those can be mistaken, but because of the
      relationship between love and will. Many of us have loved someone and
      hated having to do something that the love required, but we did it
      anyway. Our feelings or repugnance were over-ruled by the will in our
      hearts to love. Face it, love does not ALWAYS feel too good, which is
      a principal way it differs from mere feelings.

      Jean Ronan, one of my favorite teachers used to tell me to always make all
      decisions "in the light of the death candle", that is, as if one were about to
      die. How hearing that annoyed me at 30, but how true it is, and the closer one
      gets to the possibility of that death candle, the truer it is. There's a handy
      rule of thumb here. Does our choice put God and our faith first, no matter what?
      If it does not, something is terribly wrong.

      There is also the trust of faith involved here. God is God and we must firmly
      believe He will do the best for us, no matter how unclear that may sometimes be.
      Jesus often told St. Faustina to ask her superiors for permissions, hard
      permissions, to do this or that extra prayer or mortification, that He KNEW they
      would refuse. Then, after the refusal, He would tell Faustina that
      her obedience meant more to Him than the thing denied.

      He also said to her that all creatures do His will, whether they want
      to not or, whether they know it or not. Now there's a hefty order!
      Still when we look at St. Paul's remark that, "for those who love
      God, all things work together for good," this is not at all far-fetched.
      St. Paul did not say "all wise things", or "well-intentioned things", or
      "cooperative things". He said "all" and he was inspired to say that by
      the Holy Spirit.

      "All things".....hmmmm. There is a mystical point where the will of God
      cannot be thwarted. This is evident in the lives of many saints. When Jesus
      told them nothing could harm them, He wasn't just kidding around! In spite
      of seemingly insuperable odds, His will for them would triumph again and
      again. But this is NOT just for saints: it is true for all of us! Obedience
      throws us into the vortex of that, but it gets easier as our faith
      (and experience of God's goodness!) deepens.

      We have been too ready to think that obedience depends only on
      humans, who are flawed. It doesn't. All obedience is given to God.
      Our love and trust and His love and mercy are the deciding factors,
      not the universally flawed human weakness that plagues every human
      means of God's will in this world.

      Want a little theological aside here? Look at what this concept of
      all doing His will does to the concept of sin. It makes it the ULTIMATE rip-off.
      If, even when we try to thwart God, we further His plans (and face it, He
      *IS* clever enough to pull that off,) then we are left with absolutely nothing
      but the bitter ashes of our own useless self- defeat. Whether we are with Him or
      against Him,
      His kingdom will nevertheless come. What a tragedy to have been nothing
      more than a futile obstacle to that!

      Love and prayers,
      Jerome, OSB
      Petersham, MA
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