Yesterday, Sunday, on climbing the stairs to go to the upper choir for the
sung Mass, I was quite recollected, yet without any particular thought, when
I heard clearly within me, “My delight is to be with the children of men.”
These words which made a strong impression on me, I understood were not for
me this time, but rather in the nature of a request the Lord was making me
to offer the whole of myself to give Him these souls He so much desires. It
is hard to explain, but I saw clearly, that a soul which sanctifies itself
becomes fruitful in attracting souls to God.
This so deeply moved me that I offered with my whole heart to the Lord all
my sufferings of body and soul for this purpose, despite my poverty. It then
seemed to me that this offering was right, but what was strictly important was
to surrender myself, wholly and completely to the divine will, so that He could
do what He desired in me and likewise I would accept the pain along with the
pleasure. I seemed to understand that what pleased Him was not the greatest
sacrifice but rather the exact and loving fulfilment in the least detail of that will.
In this I understood many things I find hard to explain, and how He wished
me to be very sensitive in this fulfilment, which would carry me a long way
in self-sacrifice and love.
I offered myself in such a way that nothing would excuse me, not even hell,
(if there you can love the Lord), but then I am so cowardly. The Lord will
remedy that, since I can do no more than commit myself to Him in all my
misery. I began experiencing this as a desire to commit myself for souls
and to be faithful for this purpose: thinking about what He had done for
them, it seemed He was saying to me I could not do much, but He could, with
my help. On feeling this immense desire of the Lord for the salvation of
souls, it seemed so amazing that nothing remained but to be committed to God
so that He could carry out all His work in the soul and thus make it,
despite its poverty, capable of giving Him what He desires. Each time it
became clearer to my soul so that nothing of my own remained important,
except that the Lord alone be glorified.
What a treasure the Lord has given me in allowing me to live in Carmel!
Here, everything is arranged with such simplicity, yet in such a way that,
living it to the full, you can do everything. How can we live in the House
of the Virgin, pleasing the Lord with her, yet not imitating her, as the
Holy Mother desired? I felt that this is the Carmelite’s way, imitating
Mary, how we must grow less, to be truly poor, self-sacrificing, humble,
nothing. I felt quite deeply how Jesus gives us in His own life continual
examples of sacrifice, of humiliation, of making ourselves small, yet we do
not understand. I felt His mercy and zeal for souls in this way, that here
is the strength that can take hold of our life through His mercy. By His
grace, may I, who am so absolutely poor in everything, be well able to
imitate Him in this with more ease than other creatures. I seemed also to
understand that these lights were not given only for myself, but also for
guiding my sisters. The sole thing I do, many times in the day, is to say
to the Lord that I wish to live only to love Him and to please Him, that I
desire all that He wishes in the way that He wills.