Sunday, August 1, 2010

The meanest tasks done out of love for Him burst in glory

"St John of the Cross says something to the effect that one act of pure love is worth more than a hundred years of activity. It is likewise true that love alone ennobles activity, just as prayer nourishes it. Mere activity of itself is quite meaningless in the eyes of God; but the meanest tasks done out of love for Him burst in glory on His vision. Perhaps the silent Sister cook taking the fat brown loaves from the oven, or canning the pickles which will be sold in the city to help defray our expenses, is tipping the scales of the world on its own favor and in God's. Her sweat and her love and her labor pull their weight in the mystery of salvation as surely as the writings of philosophers or the wonder-revealing breakers of the scientists.

We live in such a noisy world that many of us have come to be afraid of silence. We think that if only we do a great deal, it does not much matter what we are. In fact, we seldom stop to investigate what manner of man we are. The hero of the hour is the one who can accomplish the greatest number of things in the shortest possible time. But he makes a sorry monastic hero. It is not what our Lady did which made her the Queen of Heaven and earth, but what she was."

-- A right to be merry by Mother Mary Francis, PCC

** Painting by Helen Mary Elizabeth Allingham, RWS

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