I pray for the grace to recognize how and where I might have a divided heart desiring both “life and death” through my attitudes and choices.
The Two Standards of St. Ignatius Loyola from the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola:
Imagine the enemy seated himself in that great field of Babylon, as in a great chair of fire and smoke, in shape horrible and terrifying. Consider the discourse which he makes them, and how he tells them to cast out nets and chains; that they have first to tempt with a longing for riches — as he is accustomed to do in most cases — that people may more easily come to vain honor of the world, and then to vast pride. So that the first step shall be that of riches; the second, that of honor; the third, that of pride; and from these three steps he draws on to all the other vices.
So, on the contrary, one has to imagine as to the supreme and true Captain, who is Christ our Lord. He puts Himself in a great field of that region of Jerusalem, in lowly place, beautiful and attractive. Consider the discourse which Christ our Lord makes to all His servants and friends whom He sends on this expedition, recommending them to want to help all, by bringing them first to the highest spiritual poverty, and — if His Divine Majesty would be served and would want to choose them — no less to actual poverty; the second is to be of contumely and contempt; because from these two things humility follows. So that there are to be three steps; the first, poverty against riches; the second, contumely or contempt against worldly honor; the third, humility against pride. And from these three steps let them induce to all the other virtues.
“Follow Me” by Ilya Repin, 1903
View the daily readings at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops website.
My Eyes So Soft
by Sufi Master Hafiz
Your loneliness so quickly,
Let it cut more
Let it ferment and season you
As few human
Or even divine ingredients can.
Something missing in my heart tonight
Has made my eyes so soft,
My voice so
My need of God
From “Wishful Thinking: A Seeker's ABC” by Frederick Buechner:
Self-love or pride is a sin when, instead of leading you to share with others the self you love, it leads you to keep yourself in perpetual safe-deposit. You not only don’t accrue any interest that way but become less and less interesting every day.
by R.S. Thomas
Where to turn without turning
to stone? From the one side
history’s Medusa stares,
from the other one love
on its cross. While the heart
fills not with light
from the mind, but with the shadow
too much of sun light casts.
Music: “O Mensch, bewein dein Sünde gross” (O mankind, mourn your great sin) from “St. Matthew Passion” by Johann Sebastian Bach
Song: “Good from Evil” by Levi Weaver
Song: “We Are Broken” by Paramore