Josemaría Escrivá Obras

The piety which is born of divine filiation is a profound attitude of the soul which eventually permeates one's entire existence. It is there in every thought, every desire, every affection. Haven't you noticed in families how children, even without realising it, imitate their parents? They imitate their gestures, their habits; much of their behaviour is the same as that of their parents.

Well, the same kind of thing happens to a good son of God. One finds oneself acquiring — without knowing how, or by what means — a marvellous godliness, which enables us to focus events from the supernatural viewpoint of faith; we come to love all men as our Father in Heaven loves them and, what is more important, we become more fervent in our daily efforts to come closer to God. Our wretchedness, I insist, doesn't matter, because we have the loving arms of our Father God to lift us up.

Have you noticed what a great difference there is between a child falling and a fall by an adult? In the case of children, most falls are unimportant; they are always falling over! If they do start crying, their father tells them: 'Look here now, men don't cry.' And the incident ends with the child trying earnestly to please his father.

But what happens if an adult loses his balance and falls awkwardly to the ground? If it weren't so pitiful, his misfortune would provoke merriment and laughter. Besides, the fall may have serious consequences and, if it's an old man, it might even give rise to a fracture that will never heal. In our interior life, it does all of us good to be quasi modo geniti infantes, like those tiny tots who seem to be made of rubber and who even enjoy falling over because they get up again right away and are once more running around, and also because they know their parents will always be there to console them, whenever they are needed.

If we try to act like them, our stumbling and failures in the interior life (which, moreover, are inevitable) will never result in bitterness. Our reaction will be one of sorrow but not discouragement, and we'll smile with a smile that gushes up like fresh water out of the joyous awareness that we are children of that Love, that grandeur, that infinite wisdom, that mercy, that is our Father. During the years I have been serving Our Lord, I have learned to become a little child of God. I would ask you to do likewise, to be quasi modo geniti infantes, children who long for God's word, his bread, his food, his strength, to enable us to behave henceforth as Christian men and women.

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