Preserving Spiritual Tranquility – Part 5 of 5

St Francis of Assisi, Exorcism of the Demons at Arezzo by Giotto di Bondone

Concluding his discussion of spiritual tranquility, Father Frassinetti advises: “Do not torment yourself with fears on account of the temptations which assail you so strongly and so frequently. It is clear that God permits them in order to be able to crown you with a particular glory in Heaven. One cannot have great victories without great combats; and great victors receive great crowns.”

“Have firm confidence that you will not fall. . . . Say to our Lord: ‘I have no fear in this world but that of offending Thee, O my God, and becoming Thine enemy.'”

“Do not be disconcerted because you feel yourself tempted, even greatly tempted, by pride; for if the demon of pride is knocking continually at the door of your heart it is a proof that he has not yet entered therein. Pray—be tranquil, for God will not permit him to enter.”

“You should aspire to that bold confidence in God which made St. Paul say: ‘I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor might, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature can separate us from the love of God which is in Jesus Christ our Lord’ (Rom 8:38-39).”

“A hope so secure, so solid, rooted in God alone, from whom comes all our strength and sufficiency, will be the most efficient means of not falling any more; and it will be so for two reasons. In the first place, because the merit of hope is great, and the firmer and more perfect the hope is, the greater is the merit. Meanwhile this merit disposes us for the reception of Divine grace; and the greater our merit is, the better we are disposed to receive grace abundantly, so that the aids to grace being multiplied, our perseverance is made daily more and more certain on the part of God. Secondly, the assurance that we are obtaining a great good, a supreme good (which constant perseverance in friendship with God certainly is), gives us great courage to overcome every difficulty, every obstacle which comes in the way of our progress.”

Quotations from Joseph Frassinetti, The Consolation of the Devout Soul, trans. Georgiana Lady Chatterton (London: Burns and Oates, 1876).

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