From Isaac of Stella

"So, brother, make for yourself a hidden place within yourself, in which you can flee away from yourself and pray in secret to the Father." Isaac of Stella

Passing From Self to God: A Cistercian Retreat, Robert Thomas, OCSO Cistercian Press, 2006, p. 4

Monday, September 26, 2011


It has been a few months since last posting, but life has gone on briskly and full of the business of living which is our great blessing and challenge.   I have taken the bull by the horns and begun spiritual direction under my Priest.  It was a bit embarrassing to admit to my goal for direction- I want to know union with God, to share in the life of the Trinity and know in life a taste of the blessedness of the beatific vision.  This contains within it the desire to be a "saint", not necessarily a canonized one but one in reality.  Rather ambitious.  I have been reading heavily in the writings of the great Cistercians and realize that I need to work in the direction of self abnegation and of humility.  So much of my life is egocentric.  I am praying all the time the words, "Lord, you are beautiful beyond compare!" and trying to push away thoughts about myself, my sinfulness, my triumphs, etc.  I am in a field where my ego gets stroked regularly.  This is something I need to get a grip on.  How can one lead a team, motivate subordinates, without fostering some gravitas?  Is gravitas the necessary enemy of humility?  How can one have gravitas yet be numbered among the foolish of the world and seek to be seen as less than those around you?  St. John of the Cross once again is my great patron.  May he guide me and intercede for me, and may his works find fertile soul in my mind.  After the Cistercian text I am currently reading, I think I will reread some of St. Therese of Lisieux.  The little flower knew the virtue of humility and lived it well.

Saint John of the Cross, great doctor of the mystical love of God for man,
Pray for me and for all poor sinners wandering in the vale, seeking the face of God.

Saint Therese, Little Flower
Pray for me in my arrogance that I may truly become little and hidden in the wounds of Christ