Unreserved Self-Abandonment

If God at times takes tranquillity away, let it go with all the rest.  For ever God remains, and it is enough to love him with the greater purity in that he alone remains.  At such times, therefore, by those interior deprivations which nature so abominates as its final death, its ultimate annihilation and its final loss. Let us be patient. Fiat! Fiat! Only by the ways of loss, self-abnegation, unreserved self-abandonment, do we make steady progress towards perfection. –from Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence, pg. 414

Unreserved self-abandonment implies that abandonment alone is not enough. With haste we must throw caution to the wind and look only to our Lord Jesus. Not saintly thoughts, not good deeds, but Jesus Christ alone must be our guide, our light, our center.

Jesus, who loves us without fail.

Jesus who never goes away.

Jesus, who already knows all the sin in us — past, present, and future — adores us in an intimate way.  There is no act, thought, idea or even prayer that surpasses him.

On the same page, Father de Caussade continues [he is writing to one of the sisters]:

It is precisely the lively consciousness you have of your extreme frailty which must have been one of the things which helped you most, since, in making you realize that you are liable to fall at any moment, it instills in you a thorough distrust of yourself, and enables you to put into practice a blind trust in God. It is in this sense that the Apostle said: “For when I feel most weak, then am I more powerful, because the acute sense of my weakness clothes me, through a more complete trust, with all the strength of Jesus Christ.” (emphasis mine)

It is only when we recognize and firmly acknowledge our weakness and inability to do anything apart from God that we stop relying on ourselves and develop this “blind trust in God” of which Fr. de Caussade speaks. Of course, God can work however he chooses, however, this distrust of ourselves and trust in God will more than likely be a gradual change.

Again, it is important to remember that the recognition of our sinfulness and frailty is a grace given to us by God, and by extension, the trust in God that comes about because of it is also from him.

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  1. When We Feel That We Are Abandoning Ourselves to God Poorly « Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence

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