“So also those who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to the faithful Creator, doing good” (1 Pet 4,19)
One of the most opportune moments to do God’s will well is when trials, the crosses of life, reach us. If God allows this to happen, He will certainly know how to use them for our good and strengthen us for spiritual combat.Therefore, the apostles have always encouraged the faithful to confront them with courage. St. Peter says:
“Dear friends, do not be troubled in the fire of trial, as if something extraordinary happens to you. On the contrary, rejoice in being partakers of the sufferings of Christ … “(1Pt 4,12).
And he teaches that trial will bring us to perfection:
It is important to trust God in the hour of suffering and not to be disturbed in the fire of trial. Do not be exasperated, do not lose peace and calm, for this is exactly what the tempter desires. An agitated soul is at his pleasure. It cannot pray, it’s angry, sulky, sad, unkind to others, and it’s depressed.
The antidote to all this is the humble acceptance of God’s will at the very moment when something unpleasant occurs to us, immediately giving glory to God, as St. Paul teaches:
“In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:16). For, “all things work together for the good of them that love God” (Rom 8:28).
It is necessary to do this great and difficult exercise of giving glory to God in adversity. A simple way is to glorify God, often praying “Glory to the Father, to the Son and to the Holy Spirit …” until the soul calms down and gives up
to the care of God.
This attitude is very pleasing to God, because it is the expression of the pure faith of those who abandon themselves to their care. It is like the faith of Mary and Abraham that they “waited against all hope” (Heb 11: 17-19) and thus pleased God exceedingly.
There are times in life that a solution to the problem seems impossible; It’s just this hour, when everything is in
failure, that God acts when we have faith.
One day I was traveling to the United States. I was to arrive in New York and take another plane to Boston, where I would preach two retreats. When I arrived in New York I faced a huge immigration line, and I realized that I would not have time to move from the airport to catch the flight to Boston, where someone was already waiting for me. I was anxious.
I began to pray in the midst of anguish. I invoked God, the intercession of the saints, of the Virgin Mary without ceasing. When, after two hours in the immigration line, thinking that it would not give more time, the line began to move fast and we were attended to. After the desk service, we quickly picked up our bags and took a taxi. The other airport – La Guardia – was far away and the heavy traffic, I was asking God that his angels would open the way for us; we arrived in time at the company’s ticket desk to check-in. But behold, it was not that terminal of embarkation; we then had to take a bus to the new terminal; it seemed impossible to catch the flight to Boston. At great cost we arrived at the new booth, which was empty, we immediately checked in, a favor, and we rushed to boarding. When we got there the passengers were boarding and with them we were able to leave. I was sure I would not have the time, but God’s grace provided.When all else fails, God acts when we have faith.
Job was very pleased with God because in the midst of all trials, having lost all his goods and all his children, he still knew how to say in faith:
“Naked I came out of my mother’s womb, naked will I return. The Lord gave, the Lord took away; blessed be the name of the Lord “(Job 1:21).
The saints affirm that one “blessed be God!” Pronounced from the heart, in the midst of the fire of trial, is better than a thousand acts of thanksgiving when all goes well.
Also note: Patience in trials – James 1,2-12
The divine gardener of our soul knows the methods that he must employ to cleanse every soul. Do not be alarmed by the prunings that the divine Gardener makes in the garden of your soul. St. Teresa says that she heard Jesus say to her:
And so he asserted that he would not trade his sufferings for all the treasures of the world. I was sure that
God hallowed her by trials. The saint went so far as to say that “when someone does good to God, the Lord pays him some cross.”
For us these words seem absurd, but not to the saints, who knew all the salvific power and sanctifying grace of suffering. St Paul said that:
“Our tribulations for the moment are light and prepare us a for eternal glory” (cf2 Cor 4,17). Let us learn from them. Let us fight for holiness!
Retrieved from the book: “Como Fazer a Vontade de Deus?” [How to Do the Will of God?]. Prof. Felipe Aquino. Ed. Cléofas.