Saturday, December 24, 2005

"My Grace is Sufficient for you"

“We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8: 28)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that God did not create the world in a perfect state. He created a world that is “in a state of journeying” towards its ultimate perfection. The Catechism defines divine providence as the ‘dispositions by which God guides his creation toward this perfection: By his providence God protects and governs all things which he has made, ‘reaching mightily from one end of the earth to the other, and ordering all things well.” (CCC #302)

William Law writes that “If anyone could tell you the shortest, surest way to all happiness and perfection, he must tell you to make it a rule to yourself to thank and praise God for everything that happens to you. For it is certain that whatever seeming calamity happens to you, if you thank and praise God for it, you turn it into a blessing.”

I find the teaching on divine providence the most consoling truth in Sacred Scripture. My delays, disappointments, obstacles, handicaps, disadvantages instead of being negatives are actually my masterpieces. When I thank and praise God for these, I express my belief in God’s loving and adorable providence. Jean-Pierre Caussade, an 18th century French Jesuit who was a master on divine providence wrote: “Let us make it a habit to accept everything God’s hand offers us, and to bless him unfailingly in all things and for all things. If in this way we welcome his designs, our greatest difficulties will profit us most.” (Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that “The witness of Scripture is unanimous that the solicitude of divine providence is concrete and immediate; God cares for all, from the least things to the great events of the world and its history. The sacred books powerfully affirm God’s absolute sovereignty over the course of events.” (CCC #303) When Jesus said to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness” Christ was affirming the power of divine providence over all circumstances.

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