On passing on the sublime thoughts God gave her…
I cannot regard such thoughts as my personal property, and so He is very welcome to make use of me to pass them on to others.
Besides, I have been convinced for a long time that, though of course one must not despise anything that helps us to be more closely united to God, such inspirations, however sublime, are worth nothing without deeds.
True, others may profit by these thoughts, so long as they are grateful to God for allowing them to share the banquet of one more privileged, but if it makes the latter self-satisfied, like the Pharisee, she would be like someone dying of hunger at a well-spread table. The guests would take their fill, perhaps even casting envious eyes upon the owner of such riches, while she starved.
Yes, only God can see what is in the bottom of our hearts; we are half-blind. When someone is more enlightened than we are, we conclude that God must love us less. Since when did He lose the right to use anyone He likes to feed His other children with the food they need?
He has always chosen from among His people those through whom He carries out His work for souls.
–St. Therese of Lisiuex, Story of a Soul
The Well-Beloved has no need of our glorious deeds nor of our fine thoughts. If He desires sublime conceptions has He not His Angels, whose knowledge surpasses infinitely that of the world’s greatest geniuses? It is not either intellect or talent that He looks for here below…He has called Himself the Flower of the Field (Cant. 2:1) to show us how much He cherishes simplicity.
–St. Therese of Lisieux, Letter 14 to her sister Celine
I see now that true charity consists in bearing with the faults of those about us, never being surprised at their weaknesses, but edified at the least sign of virtue. I see above all that charity must not remain hidden in the bottom of our hearts, for “no man lighteth a candle and putteth it in a hidden place, nor under a bushel; but upon a candlestick, that they who come in may see the light” (Luke 11:33). It seems to me that this candle is the symbol of charity; it must shine out not only to cheer those we love best, but ALL those who are of the household.
–Story of a Soul