Josemaría Escrivá Obras

After this affirmation of love, we must behave as lovers of God. "In everything we do, let us behave as servants of the Lord." If you give yourself as he wishes, the influence of grace will be apparent in your professional conduct, in your work, in your effort to divinise human things — be they great or small. For Love gives a new dimension to everything.

But during this Lent, let us not forget that to be servants of God is no easy matter. The text from this Sunday's epistle continues: "As God's ministers we have to show great patience, in times of affliction, of need, of difficulty; under the lash, in prison, in the midst of tumult; when we are tired out, sleepless and fasting. We have to be pure-minded, enlightened, forgiving and gracious to others; we have to rely on the Holy Spirit, on unaffected love, on the truth of our message, on the power of God."

In the most varied activities of our day, in all situations, we must act as God's servants, realizing that he is with us, that we are his children. We must be aware of the divine roots burrowing into our life and act accordingly.

These words of the Apostle should make you happy, for they are, as it were, a ratification of your vocation as ordinary Christians in the middle of the world, sharing with other men — your equals — the enthusiasms, the sorrows and the joys of human life. All this is a way to God. What God asks of you is that you should, always, act as his children and servants.

But these ordinary circumstances of life will be a divine way only if we really change ourselves, if we really give ourselves. For St Paul uses hard words. He promises that the Christian will have a hard life, a life of risk and of constant tension. How we disfigure Christianity if we try to turn it into something nice and comfortable! But neither is it true to think that this deep, serious way of life, which is totally bound up with all the difficulties of human existence, is something full of anguish, oppression or fear.

The Christian is a realist. His supernatural and human realism helps him appreciate all the aspects of his life: sorrow and joy, his own and other people's suffering, certainty and doubt, generosity and selfishness. The Christian experiences all this, and he confronts it all, with human integrity and with the strength he receives from God.

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