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Abandonment not a heroic sacrifice, but a simple sinking into the will of God.

LETTER XXXIV. Abandonment not a heroic sacrifice, but a simple sinking into the will of God. Your sole task, my dear daughter, is, to bear your infirmities both of body and mind. When I am weak, says the Apostle, then am I strong; strength is made perfect in weakness. We are only strong in God in pr... Read More

Absolute trust the shortest road to God.

LETTER XXVI. Absolute trust the shortest road to God. I have no doubt but that God constantly treats you as one of his friends, that is, with crosses, sufferings, and humiliations. The ways and means of God to draw souls to Himself, accomplish his design much more rapidly and effectually than all th... Read More

Beware of the pride of reasoning; the true guide to knowledge is love.

LETTER XXX. Beware of the pride of reasoning; the true guide to knowledge is love. Your mind is too much occupied with exterior things, and still worse, with argumentation, to be able to act with a frequent thought of God. I am always afraid of your excessive inclination to reason; it is a hinderanc... Read More

Daily dying takes the place of final death.

LETTER XXXV. Daily dying takes the place of final death. We must bear our crosses; self is the greatest of them; we are not entirely rid of it until we can tolerate ourselves as simply and patiently as we do our neighbor. If we die in part every day of our lives, we shall have but little to do on th... Read More

Despair at our imperfection is a greater obstacle than the imperfection itself.

LETTER XIII. Despair at our imperfection is a greater obstacle than the imperfection itself. Be not concerned about your defects. Love without ceasing, and you shall be much forgiven, because you have loved much. (Luke vii. 47.) We are apt to seek the delights and selfish supports of love, rather th... Read More

Fenelon's Maxims of the Saints

ARTICLE FIRST. Of the love of God, there are various kinds. At least, there are various feelings which go under that name. First, There is what may be called mercenary or selfish love; that is, that love of God which originates in a sole regard to our own happiness. Those who love God with no other ... Read More

God speaks more effectually in the soul, than to it.

LETTER XXXIX. God speaks more effectually in the soul, than to it. Nothing gives me more satisfaction than to see you simple and peaceful. Simplicity brings back the state of Paradise. We have no great pleasures, and suffer some pain; but we have no desire for the former, and we receive the latter w... Read More

How to bear suffering so as to preserve our peace.

LETTER II. How to bear suffering so as to preserve our peace. As to our friend, I pray God to bestow upon him a simplicity that shall give him peace. When we are faithful in instantly dropping all superfluous and restless reflections, which arise from a self-love as different as possible from charit... Read More

Imperfection only is intolerant of imperfection.

LETTER XXIV. Imperfection only is intolerant of imperfection. It has seemed to me that you have need of more enlargedness of heart in relation to the defects of others. I know that you cannot help seeing them when they come before you, nor prevent the opinions you involuntarily form concerning the m... Read More

Knowledge puffeth up; charity edifieth.

LETTER VIII. Knowledge puffeth up; charity edifieth. I am happy to hear of your frame of mind, and to find you communicating in simplicity everything that takes place within you. Never hesitate to write me whatever you think God requires. It is not at all surprising that you have a sort of jealous a... Read More

Living by the cross and by faith.

LETTER XII. Living by the cross and by faith. Everything is a cross; I have no joy but bitterness; but the heaviest cross must be borne in peace. At times it can neither be borne nor dragged; we can only fall down beneath it, overwhelmed and exhausted. I pray that God may spare you as much as possib... Read More

Our knowledge stands in the way of our becoming wise

LETTER XV. Our knowledge stands in the way of our becoming wise. Live in peace, my dear young lady, without any thought for the future; perhaps there will be none for you. You have no present, even, of your own, for you must only use it in accordance with the designs of God, to whom it truly belongs... Read More

Peace lies in simplicity and obedience.

LETTER V. Peace lies in simplicity and obedience. Cultivate peace; be deaf to your too prolific imagination; its great activity not only injures the health of your body, but introduces aridity into your soul. You consume yourself to no purpose; peace and interior sweetness are destroyed by your rest... Read More

Poverty and spoliation the way of Christ.

LETTER XXXII. Poverty and spoliation the way of Christ. Everything contributes to prove you; but God who loves you, will not suffer your temptations to exceed your strength. He will make use of the trial for your advancement. But we must not look inwards with curiosity to behold our progress, our st... Read More

Pure faith sees God alone.

LETTER XIV. Pure faith sees God alone. Be not anxious about the future; it is opposed to grace. When God sends you consolation, regard Him only in it, enjoy it day by day as the Israelites received their manna, and do not endeavor to lay it up in store. There are two peculiarities of pure faith; it ... Read More

Quietness in God our true resource.

LETTER XVII. Quietness in God our true resource. Warmth of imagination, ardor of feeling, acuteness of reasoning, and fluency of expression, can do but little. The true agent is a perfect abandonment before God, in which we do everything by the light which He gives, and are content with the success ... Read More

Resisting God, an effectual bar to grace.

LETTER XXXVIII. Resisting God, an effectual bar to grace. You perceive, by the light of God, in the depth of your conscience, what grace demands of you, but you resist Him. Hence your distress. You begin to say within, it is impossible for me to undertake to do what is required of me; this is a temp... Read More

Suffering belongs to the living, not the dead.

LETTER XXXVI. Suffering belongs to the living, not the dead. Many are deceived when they suppose that the death of self is the cause of all the agony they feel, but their suffering is only caused by the remains of life. Pain is seated in the living, not the dead parts; the more suddenly and complete... Read More

The absence of feeling and the revelation of self no sufficient causes of distress.

LETTER XX. The absence of feeling and the revelation of self no sufficient causes of distress. I pray God that this new year may be full of grace and blessing to you. I am not surprised that you do not enjoy recollection as you did on being delivered from a long and painful agitation. Everything is ... Read More

The advantage of humiliation

LETTER I. The advantage of humiliation. I pray often to God that He would keep you in the hollow of his hand. The most essential point is lowliness. It is profitable for all things, for it produces a teachable spirit which makes everything easy. You would be more guilty than many others if you made ... Read More

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