Thursday, April 2, 2015

What costs nothing is worth nothing


Dear Daughters of St. Philip Neri,

As you walk with the Lord in His Passion, remember who it was that remained with Him at the Cross.  What is so striking about the painting above is that Christ is not elevated high above the crowd, but at eye level and within reach.  Those who love him most deeply are constrained in that love to draw close to the wounds He bore and to gaze into the eyes of suffering Love - of Love rejected - of Love betrayed.

It is only in drawing close, not only in our gaze but in our experience of suffering, that the Father helps us overcome ourselves and to receive willingly and drink from the chalice of our Beloved.  Drink from this cup at every moment and in every one of your actions.  If your love is pure and true, you will drink it to the dregs.

Loving souls follow Jesus everywhere, as well and even more willingly to Golgotha as to the Mount of the Transfiguration. Who remained at the foot of the Cross with Jesus? His Virgin-Mother, who loved Him with a love into which not the least self-seeking entered; Magdalen, whom Jesus had forgiven much because she loved much; St. John, who possessed the secrets of the Divine Heart. These three stayed there near to Jesus.

God often makes use of suffering in the spiritual life to develop our love, because , in such moments, the soul has to overcome itself, and that is a mark of the strength of its charity.  Look at our Lord; He made no act of love more intense than when in His agony He accepted the bitter chalice offered to Him, and when, abandoned by His Father, He achieved His sacrifice upon the Cross.

I want you to apply yourself with order and attention to act solely out of love for God in all that you do. Each action done out of pure love is an act of pure love of God, and the more this act costs you, the greater and more meritorious is the love. Thus it was upon the Cross that our Lord showed most love. What costs nothing is worth nothing.

Marmion, Blessed Columba