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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Going through God's meat grinder

By Barbara A. Schoeneberger

File:Hendrick Terbrugghen (follower of) - The Liberation of St. Peter - Google Art Project.jpg
The Liberation of St. Peter by Terbrugghen (photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Our journey towards sainthood can be compared to being put through a meat grinder. I’m old enough to know what meat grinders look like in action, having personally observed the cook use one in the convent where I once lived. A slab of a former cow is reduced to a pile of hamburger on its way to filling the stomachs of the hungry and so it is with us in our transformation along the way to heaven. God, our heavenly chef makes mincemeat out of us to shape us into something useful and delicious to feed those hungry for salvation.

Being ground up to bits is not fun. We can’t endure it without the grace of faith. St. Therese of Lisieux knew this well, writing in Story of a Soul, “I have made more acts of faith during the past year than in all the rest of my life.” In this case she was speaking of the dark night of the soul, but her words could just as easily apply to all the circumstances we face when God allows us to endure situations which afflict, humble, and mortify us.

Divine Intimacy Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalene writes:
It will sometimes be easier to accept heavy trials which come directly from Our Lord, such as illness and bereavement, than other lighter ones where creatures enter into play, and for which, perhaps, we experience greater repugnance. The immediate action of creatures, especially if their malice has a share in it, makes it more difficult for us to discover the divine hand. A greater spirit of faith is necessary here, that we may pass beyond the human side of circumstances, the faulty way of acting of such and such a person, and find, beyond all these human contingencies, the dispositions of divine Providence, which wills to use these particular creatures, and even their defects and errors, to file away our self-love and destroy our pride.

Continue reading at Barb's blog  Suffering With Joy.

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