In doing some preparation for a retreat, I have run across some beautiful quotes that are worth sharing as we prepare for a New Year. Perhaps one of our resolutions might be to mine the depths of the thoughts and love of the saints!
I have been crucified with Christ; yet I live, no longer I, but Christ lives in me; insofar as I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God who has loved me and given himself up for me. Gal 2:19b-20
I urge you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship. Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect. For by the grace given to me I tell everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than one ought to think, but to think soberly, each according to the measure of faith that God has apportioned. For as in one body we have many parts, and all the parts do not have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another. Rom 12:1-5
Find out how much God has given you and from it take what you need; the remainder is needed by others.
If you believe what you like in the gospels, and reject what you don't like, it is not the gospel you believe, but yourself.
Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.
What does love look like? It has the hands to help others. It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. It has eyes to see misery and want. It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. That is what love looks like.
St. Catherine of Siena
In your nature, eternal Godhead,
I shall come to know my nature.
And what is my nature, boundless love?
It is fire, because you are nothing but a fire of love.
And you have given humankind a share in this nature,
for by the fire of love you created us.
And so with all other people and every created thing;
you made them out of love.
O unfathomable depth! O Deity eternal! O deep ocean! What more could You give me than to give me Yourself? O You who are mad about Your creature! true God and true Man, You have left Yourself wholly to us, as food, so that we will not fall through weariness during our pilgrimage in this life, but will be fortified by You, celestial nourishment.
Mechtild of Magdeburg (German mystic)
I cannot dance O Lord, unless Thou lead me.
If Thou wilt that I leap joyfully
Then must Thou Thyself first dance and sing!
Then will I leap for love
From love to knowledge,
From knowledge to fruition,
From fruition to beyond all human sense
There will I remain
And circle evermore.
St. Thomas More
I think that if any good thing shall go forward, something must be adventured.
I never saw fool yet who thought himself other than wise…If a fool perceives himself a fool, that point is not folly, but a little spark of wit.
You must not abandon the ship in a storm because you cannot control the winds….What you cannot turn to good, you must at least make as little bad as you can.
Julian of Norwich (English mystic)
If there is anywhere on earth a lover of God who is always kept safe, I know nothing of it, for it was not shown to me. But this was shown: that in falling and rising again we are always kept in that same precious love.
St. Francis de Sales
A quarrel between friends, when made up, adds a new tie to friendship.
Friendships begun in this world will be taken up again, never to be broken off
Have patience with all things, But, first of all with yourself. Do not wish to be anything but what you are, and try to be that perfectly.
We must never undervalue any person. The workman loves not that his work should be despised in his presence. Now God is present everywhere, and every person is His work.
St. Theresa of Avila
It is only mercenaries who expect to be paid by the day.
How is it, Lord, that we are cowards in everything save in opposing thee?
More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones.
From silly devotions and from sour-faced saints, good Lord, deliver us.
The feeling remains that God is on the journey, too.
St. Maximillian Kolbe, OFM, while being arrested, to his friars:
“Courage, my sons. Don’t you see that we are leaving on a mission? They pay our fare in the bargain. What a piece of good luck! The thing to do now is to pray well in order to win as many souls as possible. Let us, then, tell the Blessed Virgin that we are content, and that she can do with us anything she wishes”
St. Edith Stein
The nation... doesn't simply need what we have. It needs what we are.
Pope John Paul II
Stupidity is also a gift of God, but one mustn't misuse it.