Josemaría Escrivá Obras
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I ought to put you on your guard against a trick that Satan does not hesitate to use in order to rob us of our peace. He never takes a holiday! A time may come when he sows doubts in our minds, tempting us to think that we are slipping sadly backwards and are making scarcely any progress. The conviction may grow upon us that, in spite of all our efforts to improve, we are getting worse. I can assure you that normally this pessimistic judgement is mere fantasy, a deception that needs to be rejected. What has happened, as a rule, is that our soul has become more attentive, our conscience more sensitive, and our love more demanding. It can also be that the light of grace is shining more intensely and exposing to our view many details that would otherwise remain unnoticed in the shadows. In any case, we have to examine our uneasiness carefully, because through these insights Our Lord is asking us to be more humble or more generous. It is good to remember that God in his providence is continuously leading us forward and he spares no effort, whether in the form of portentous signs or of tiny miracles, to make his children progress.

Militia est vita hominis super terram, et sicut dies mercenarii, dies eius. Man's life on earth is warfare, and his days are spent under the burden of work. No one escapes this law, not even the easygoing who try to turn a deaf ear to it. They desert the ranks of Christ, and then take up other battles to satisfy their laziness, their vanity, or their petty ambitions. They become enslaved to their every whim.

Since to be in a state of struggle is part and parcel of the human condition, let us try to fulfil our obligations with determination. Let us pray and work with good will, with upright motives and with our sights set on what God wants. This way our longing for Love will be satisfied and we shall progress along the path to sanctity, even if we find at the end of the day that we still have a long way to go.

Renew your decision each morning, with a very determined Serviam!, I will serve you, Lord! Renew your resolution not to give in, not to give way to laziness or idleness; to face up to your duties with greater hope and more optimism, convinced that if we are defeated in some small skirmish we can overcome this setback by making a sincere act of love.

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