Let all those who are persecuted for my sake be filled with the joy that surpasses all understanding…

Matthew 5:10 “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

“Beloved, do not fear persecution, but see it as a sign of great favor. Through it you grow to resemble me more and more. When the Father looks at one who has been persecuted for my sake, he does not see a weak and weary soul, but only the glory of the Crucified. Pray for strength to endure all that will gain you the kingdom. Persevere, and the God of all mercy will reward you with a glorious crown. I am with all those who suffer for my sake. I am very near to them. Let no one despair, but let all those who are persecuted for my sake be filled with the joy that surpasses all understanding.”

Oh my Jesus, thank you for your nearness and for this timely word of encouragement. Give us strength. Help us to persevere. Let us feel your nearness in our time of need, and if we do not feel it, give us the grace to trust in your unfelt nearness with all our hearts. Jesus, we trust in you. Thank you for all your favors—whatever form they take. Amen.

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15 thoughts on “Let all those who are persecuted for my sake be filled with the joy that surpasses all understanding…

  1. Janet, thank you for this beautiful clear message on entering into the Lord’s suffering and Passion. I ask prayers for Fr. John, a friend of our prayer group, that ended up in the hospital just thrashing with pain so immense, not able to walk or talk. It took a week to diagnose ADEM bacterial infection; it strikes the brain and spinal cord. He is a very holy man so we pray that God use him as He wills and that he recovers. As you wrote, “Thank you for all your favors–whatever form they take.” Amen.

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    1. Praying for Fr John and the prayer group. And I ask you to please pray for Fr Carlos. He’s the priest at St Ann’s parish in Bonners Ferry, Idaho. His church was destroyed by arson a month and a half ago. Dear Fr Carlos loves; he doesn’t understand the hatred around us. I go there for First Saturday Mass, Divine Mercy Sunday, and when he brings in speakers to his mission church. He has been persecuted, as has his parishioners, and they are grieving. Thanks

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  2. What a confirmation! I recently found in my community’s A SIMPLE PATH TO UNION WITH GOD, a long quotation from Edith Stein, St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross and used it in a post in my blog:
    + St. Benedicta wrote: “The world is in flames. The conflagration can also reach our house. But high above all the flames towers the cross. They cannot consume it. It is the path from earth to heaven. It will lift one who embraces it in faith, love, and hope into the bosom of the Trinity.
    +
    “The world is in flames. Are you impelled to put
    them out? Look at the cross. From the open heart gushes the blood of the Savior. This extinguishes the flames of hell. Make your heart free by the faithful fulfillment of your vows; then the flood of divine love will be poured into your heart until it overflows and becomes fruitful to all the ends of the earth.
    +
    “Do you hear the groans of the wounded on the battlefields in the west and the east? You are not a physician and not a nurse and cannot bind up the wounds. You are enclosed in a cell and cannot get to them. Do you hear the anguish of the dying? You would like to be a priest and comfort them. Does the lament of the widows and orphans distress you? You would like to be an angel of mercy and help them.
    +
    “Look at the Crucified. If you are…bound to Him…your being is precious blood. Bound to Him, you are omnipresent as He is. You cannot help here and there like the physician, the nurse, the priest.
    +
    “You can be at all fronts, wherever there is grief, in the power of the cross. Your compassionate love takes you everywhere, this love from the Divine Heart. Its Precious Blood is poured everywhere, soothing, healing, saving. The eyes of the Crucified look down on you asking, probing.
    +
    “Will you make your covenant with the Crucified anew in all seriousness? What will you answer Him? ‘Lord, where shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.’” [The Path, p. 215-216]
    ++++
    We are probably not enclosed in a cell–unless it is a cell of our own fear and anxiety–but St. Benedicta understands how we should feel and act in these fearful times. For her, it was fidelity to her vows; for us it is faithfulness to Christ: “Make your heart free…[by your fidelity] ; then the flood of divine love will be poured into your heart until it overflows and becomes fruitful to all the ends of the earth.”
    +
    St. Benedicta of the Cross—Edith Stein—born in Poland, was the youngest child of a large Jewish family. In 1922, she was baptized in Cologne, Germany, entered Carmel there, and was transferred to the Carmel at Echt, Holland. When the Nazis conquered Holland, she was arrested, and, with her sister Rose, was sent to the concentration camp at Auschwitz, dying in the gas chambers of Auschwitz in 1942.
    +
    Though a cloistered religious, St. Benedicta’s heart was torn by the sufferings she saw in her world and time: “The world is in flames.” But even as she saw her people, her own family swallowed by the concentration camps, as she prepared her heart for martyrdom, she knew in Whom she believed and told herself: “You can be at all fronts, wherever there is grief, in the power of the cross. Your compassionate love takes you everywhere, this love from the Divine Heart.”
    +
    BE WHO YOU ARE. Be faithful. Pray with ST. BENEDICTA OF THE CROSS:
    “O Prince of Peace, to all who receive You, You bring light and peace. Help me to live in daily contact with You, listening to the words You have spoken and obeying them. O Divine Child, I place my hands in Yours; I shall follow You. Oh, let Your divine life flow into me.
    +
    “I will go unto the altar of God. It is not myself and my tiny little affairs that matter here, but the great sacrifice of atonement. I surrender myself entirely to Your divine will, O Lord. Make my heart grow greater and wider, out of itself into the Divine Life.
    +
    “O my God, fill my soul with holy joy, courage and strength to serve You. Enkindle Your love in me and then walk with me along the next stretch of road before me. I do not see very far ahead, but when I have arrived where the horizon now closes down, a new prospect will open before me and I shall meet with peace.
    +
    “How wondrous are the marvels of your love, We are amazed, we stammer and grow dumb, for word and spirit fail us.”
    https://soulfoodministries.wordpress.com/2016/06/21/the-world-is-in-flames-st-benedicta-of-the-cross-edith-stein/

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    1. Oh, so beautiful and so welcoming after some struggling days. Praying w/ St Benedicta lightened my soul. Thank you for sharing this.

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  3. Hi, I stumbled upon your blog a while ago and enjoy your posts. For the last 5 years I feel like the Lord has been calling me to write a spiritual blog and finally this year I started one. Your blog has been an inspiration and I just want to thank you.

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  4. Hi Everyone,
    I usually just read the posts and comments because I’m trying to not spend so much time online (it is an attachment I’m trying to detach from) but wanted to share that our family was consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart of Mary yesterday!
    The link below is to a photo of our Fr Kruse and Sisters Maria Angela, Hesed and Eleanore from the Missionaries of Charity at our parish. You can just see the blessed images behind them on the bookshelf (they are supposed to be hung on the wall, but our walls are “under construction” so they wait patiently on the bookshelf till the walls are worthy)
    consecration3
    My son’s (non-catholic) friend was here during the consecration and afterwards the Sisters decided he should attend their vacation bible school, so we all ended up going across the alley to his house to talk to his mom. Boy was she surprised! Her eyes were huge. It was hard not to giggle.
    Gods blessings on everyone,
    Jill

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