Friday, January 12, 2007

The Staircase

There is a story that our dear Sister Therese of the Holy Face and Child Jesus used to tell. It was a story about a staircase - an analogy if you will. It went far to explain what was really the heart of "The Little Way" that she taught and asked to have passed on. Christ told us to "be perfect as our Father in Heaven is perfect" but THAT my friends is one tall order. Therese explained it this way. She described it as climbing the staircase to perfection with Jesus at the top. She realized how hard, and nearly impossible that climb would be. I will let Therese herself tell you the rest...

"You make me think of the very little child who starts to hold herself up but does not yet know how to walk," she said to me. "Wanting absolutely to climb to the top of the stairs to find her mother again, she lifts her little foot to finally climb the first step. Useless labor! She always falls without making any advance. Okay! Consent to be this little child. Through practicing all the virtues, keep lifting up your little foot in order to clamber up the stairs of holiness. You will not even get to the first fun, but God asks nothing of you except your good will. From the top of the stairs he looks down at you with love "Soon, won over by your ineffective efforts, he will come down Himself and, taking you in His arms, He will take you away into His kingdom forever, where you will never have to depart from Him. but if you give up lifting your little foot, He will leave you an earth for a very long time."

"Then the happy day will come when Jesus Himself will come down to carry you away in His arms,will you be more advanced by having clambered up five or six steps by your own strength? Is it more difficult for Jesus to take you from the bottom rather than from the middle of the stairs? There is yet another advantage for you not being able to climb the stairs: that is, to remain your whole life in humility, whereas if your own efforts were crowned by success you would not get any compassion from Jesus. he would let you climb up all by yourself and He would have to fear all the time lest you fall, because of your self-complacency."

God Bless you all,

Sister Julie

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