children of darkness, children of light, God, Gospel of Matthew, Holy Mary, humility, Lord, Mary, Mary of Agreda, Mystical City, Mystical City of God, palm of victory, pride, pursuit of humility, Queen of Heaven, self-knowledge, sons of perdition, virtue
Mother Mary of Agreda wrote the following about her frustrations in not being able to adequately describe that which she was asked to transcribe about the things of heaven.
From “The Mystical City Of God”:
In all things the most pure Mary exhibited consummate perfection, without any fault or want of grace;
and all her actions both in the natural and supernatural order reached the pinnacle of excellence.
But words fail me in describing it: for I am never satisfied seeing how far short these words fall of that which I perceive and how much more excellence this sublime Creature possesses than I can express.
Continually I am grieved by my insufficiency and dissatisfied with my limited terms and descriptions, fearing lest I presume more than I should in striving to do that which so far exceeds my powers.
But the force of obedience inspires me with I do not knw what sweet strength, which dispels my hesitancy and impels my backwardness, encouraging me to face the greatness of my undertaking and the smallness of my ability.
I work under obedience, and through it I hope to make great gains. It will also serve me as an excuse.
Instruction Given To Mother Mary of Agreda by The Queen of Heaven, Most Holy Mary:
My daughter, in the school of humility, which my whole life affords thee, I wish that thou be studious and diligent;
and this should be thy first and principal care, if thou wishest to enjoy the sweet embraces of the Lord, assure thyself of His favor and possess the treasures of light, which are hidden to the proud (Matthew Chapter 11 Verse 25).
For without the trusty foundation of humility such treasures cannot be confided to any man.
Let all thy ambition be to humble thyself in thy own estimation and thought, so that in thy exterior actions thou mayest truly exhibit this humility of thy interior.
It must be a subject of confusion and a spur of humility for thee and for all the souls to have the Lord as their Father and Spouse, to see, that the presumption and pride of worldly wisdom is more powerful in its devotees, than humility and true self-knowledge is in the children of light.
Consider the watchfulness, the untiring study and care of ambitious and aspiring men. Look upon their struggle to be esteemed in the world, their strivings never at rest, though so vain and worthless;
how they conduct themselves outwardly according to the false notions which they have of themselves; how they pretend to be what they are not, and how they exert themselves to obtain through these false pretenses the treasures, which, though only earthly, they do not deserve.
Hence it should be a cause of confusion and shame to the good, that deceit should urge on the sons of perdition with greater force than truth urges the elect;
that the number of those, who in the world are anxious to strive in the service of their God and Creator, should be so small in comparison with the number of those who serve vanity; that there should be so few of the elect, though all are called (Matthew Chapter 20 Verse 16).
Ponder: “All are called; but few respond.”
Seek therefore, my daughter, to make progress in this science of humility and to gain for thyself the palm of victory in this virtue in the midst of the children of darkness; in opposition to their pride, study what I did in order to overcome darkness in this world by the pursuit of humility.
In this the Lord and I desire thee to be very wise and proficient.
Never miss an occasion of exercising humility and allow no one to deprive thee of such works;
and if occasions of humility fail thee and are scarce, seek after them and ask God to send them to you; for it pleases his Majesty to see such kind of anxiety and ambition in what He desires so much.
For the sake of this divine complacency alone, thou, as a daughter of His house, as His domestic and as His spouse, for in this, human ambition itself will teach thee not to be negligent.
Observe how a woman in her house and family conducts herself in order to benefit and advance her family, and how she loses no chance of advancing it; nothing seems too much for her, and if anything, no matter how small it is, goes to loss she becomes much excited.
All this is the effect of worldly covetousness, and there is certainly no reason, that the wisdom of heaven be less fruitful or less careful in the gifts received.
Therefore, I desire thee to allow no carelessness or forgetfulness concerning what so much concerns thee, and to lose no occasion of practicing humility and laboring for the glory of the Lord;
but do thou seek and strive after His gifts and draw merits from them as a faithful daughter and spouse. Then wilt thou find grace in the eyes of the Lord in in mine, according to thy desire.
Practice humility and labor for the glory of the Lord.