Despite myself, my prayers were answered…

I asked God for strength, that I might achieve –
I was made weak, that I might learn humbly to obey.
I asked for help, that I might do greater things –
I was given infirmity, that I might do better things.
I asked for riches, that I might be happy –
I was given poverty, that I might be wise.
I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life –
I was given life, that I might enjoy all things.
I got nothing that I asked for –
But everything that I had hoped for.
Despite myself, my prayers were answered.
I am, among all men, most richly blessed.

~Prayer/poem written by an anonymous Confederate soldier during the Civil War via Michael Wade blog Execupundit

The work of spiritual direction…

Into this universal human situation Jesus comes, saying, “Repent,” which means “change the direction in which you are looking for happiness.” Human happiness is found in the growth of unconditional love. The work of spiritual direction is to help us to become aware of the obstacles to divine love and the free circulation of that love within us. This requires the cultivation of a non-possessive attitude toward ourselves and other people. Gradually we learn that God is the true security, God truly loves us, and with this love, we can make it, even if no one else seems to care.

~ Fr. Thomas Keating, OCSO, via Little Portion Hermitage