Consoling Thoughts on Suffering

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Lamentation over the Dead Body of Christ - by BOTTICELLI, Sandro - from Alte Pinakothek, Munich


Let not my Abandonment, and my Sorrow, and my Bereavement go to Waste. Gather-up the Fragments, and as the Drop-of-Water is Absorbed-by the Wine, at the Offertory-of the Mass, let my Life be-Absorbed in-Thee; let my Little Cross, be Entwined-with Thy Great Cross, so that I may-Purchase the Joys-of Everlasting Happiness, in Union with Thee.

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen


Consoling Thoughts on Suffering

by Saint Alphonsus Liguori

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littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) And when God sends us Crosses, let us not only be-Resigned, but let us also 'Thank' Him, since it is a Sign that He means-to Pardon our Sins, and Save us from Hell.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When God does not Punish a Sinner in this Life, it is a Sign that He waits-to Punish him in Eternity (∞), where the Punishment will have no End.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) If we do not have the Strength to-Desire and Seek-for Sufferings, let us at-least try-to Accept-with Patience, those Crosses which God sends us for our Good.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Give me a Soul, that Suffers with-Resignation; there is God.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) The Lord takes delight-in being near those who are Afflicted; it must, however, be those who Suffer in-Peace, and are Resigned-to the Divine Will.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) He who has Offended God, must be Punished; and, therefore, we ought always to Beg-of Him to-Chastise us in this World, and not in the Next. That Sinner is to be Pitied, who does not Receive his Chastisement, in this Life.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When a Soul First (1st) gives itself up-to the Spiritual Life, the Lord is accustomed-to 'Heap' Consolations upon it, and thus 'Withdraw' it from the Pleasures-of the World. But afterward, when He sees it more-Settled in-Spiritual Ways, He draws-back His Hand, to-Test its Love, and to see whether it 'Serves' and Loves Him, without Reward in this World.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) I call the Time-of Sickness, the Touchstone by which Souls are Tried, because in it is Discovered the Value-of the Virtue which anyone Possesses. If he does not Lose his Tranquility, if he makes no-Complaints, is not Overanxious and Obeys his Doctors, Preserving throughout, his Peacefulness-of-Mind, in Perfect Resignation-to the Divine Will, it is a Sign that he Possesses Great Virtue.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Are not the Punishments which God sends us in this Life, Acts-of-Kindness? If we have Offended Him, we have to-Satisfy His Justice, in some-way or other, either-in this Life, or in the Next. It should be a Consolation-to one who has Deserved Hell, to see that God is Punishing him, in this World. This should 'Give him' Hope, that it may-be God's Will, to-Deliver him from Eternal (∞) Punishment.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) This World is the Place-for Meriting, by Suffering; Heaven is the Place-for Rewards and Enjoyments.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) What is this World, but a Prison for us to-Suffer in, and to be in-Danger every Moment, of Losing God?

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When God sends Darkness and Desolation, He is Testing His True Friends.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Let the Soul 'Thank' the Lord, when He 'Caresses' it with Sweetness, but not Torment itself with Impatience, when it is Left-in a State-of-Desolation.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) 'Unite' your own Sufferings, with those of Jesus Christ.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Certainly our Virtue is Greater, if in Times-of Sickness, we do not Complain-of our Sufferings.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) What Greater Consolation can come-to a Soul, than to Know-that, by-Patiently Bearing some Tribulation, it gives God the Greatest Pleasure, in its Power?

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When anything Disagreeable happens, 'Remember' it Comes-from God, and say at-once, "This Comes from God", and be at-Peace.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Sickness is the Acid Test of Spirituality, because it Discloses whether our Virtue is Real or Sham. If the Soul is not-Agitated, does not Break-out in Lamentations, is not-Feverishly Restless in-Seeking a Cure, but-Instead is Submissive-to the Doctors, and to-Superiors, is Serene and Tranquil, completely Resigned-to Godís Will, it is a Sign that, that Soul is well-Grounded in Virtue.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Our Offenses-against God, must be Atoned-for somehow, either in this-Life, or in the Next.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Having Merited Hell for our Sins, we should be Consoled that God Chastises us in this Life, and Animate ourselves to look-upon such-Treatment as a Pledge, that God wishes-to Spare us, in the Next.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) Let the Soul 'Thank' God, when she experiences His Loving Endearments, but let her not Repine, when she finds herself left-in Desolation. It is important-to lay Great Stress, on this Point, because some Souls, Beginners-in the Spiritual Life, finding themselves in Spiritual Aridity, think God has Abandoned them, or that the Spiritual Life is not for them; thus they give-up the Practice-of Prayer, and Lose what they have previously-Gained. The Time-of Aridity is the best Time to-Practice Resignation-to God's Holy Will.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When God sends Spiritual Darkness and Desolation, His True Friends become Known.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When God sends us Punishments, let us Say-with the High-Priest Heli: "It is the Lord, let Him do what is Good, in His Sight".

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) And, above all, let us Love that Prayer which Jesus Christ has Taught us: "Your Will be done, on-Earth as it is in-Heaven".


Suffering Prayer to Saint Alphonsus

Saint Alphonsus, Preacher, Confessor, Founder, Bishop, Doctor-of-the-Church, and Friend-of the Poor, you are also the Special Patron-of all who Suffer-from Arthritis, and the Pains-of many Years.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When our Fingers Twist-with Pain, keep us Focused-on the Hands-of Christ, Pierced-with Ugly Nails.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When our Knees knob-with Endless-Aches, allow us to see the Knees-of Jesus, Smashing-to the Street, under the Heavy Cross.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When our Backs stiffen-with Soreness, let us Remember the Back-of Christ, thrown-across the Cold, Rough Wood-of the Cross.

littlegoldcross.gif (962 bytes) When our Joints, Hips, Arms, Legs and Knuckles, hurt so-much that Tears well-up in our Eyes, help us to-Recall the Tears, the Sweat, and the Blood that flowed-from our Crucified Jesus, Who suffered so-much more for each of us.

Saint Alphonsus, afflicted-with Curvature-of the Spine, and nailed-to a Wheelchair-Cross in your Final Years, Teach us to-Unite all our Pains, with the dreadful Sufferings-of Jesus, on the Cross.

We ask you to-Ease our Pains, but more so to-enable us to be One-with Jesus, in His Great Act-of Dying and Rising.