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For the Preservation of the Deposit of the Faith
For the Kingdom of God to come!
Every day we complain of our weakness, of the difficulties, let us say the word, of the impossibilities of virtue. To the precepts of the Gospel, to the exhortations of the Church, to the complaints of our conscience, how often do we answer with the words of the failing will which despairs of itself: “I cannot!” If we are told, “Mortify the pride in yourself. – I cannot. – Detach yourself from creatures and from what passes. – I cannot.” Well, at this moment faith does not accuse your precepts: it accepts them. It says as you do: “You cannot.”
No, we cannot alone by our own strength, and constantly, engage in those fearful combats against ourselves, in which the soul leaves as it were a portion of itself, and from which comes that harsh and bloody victory which is called virtue. We cannot convert and save ourselves. But we can ask God to do with us what we cannot do without Him. We can fall on our knees and say to Him: “My God! Change me and save me!” In a word, we can pray. O wonderful virtue of prayer! Of myself I can do nothing; but above me I have Him who can do everything. I have only to invoke Him, and there He lends His omnipotence to my infirmity! I go to Him by my prayer; He comes to me by His grace. Without prayer, I was weak with all the weaknesses of the creature: by prayer, I become strong with the very strength of the Creator.