Thought for the Day – 5 September – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
My Life is Christ
“St Paul reached such a degree of union with Christ that he could exclaim” “To me to live is Christ” (Phil 1:21).
Elsewhere he says” “It is now no longer I that live but Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20).
This is a characteristic of the Saints.
They live their own lives no longer, for they live the life of Christ.
That is to say, their minds and hearts are always fixed on Jesus.
They love the Lord, more than all things and, more than themselves.
God is the object of all their desires, affections and actions.
As a result, the soul is transfigured and is infused with divine life, so that it does nothing which is not activated by grace.
In the Saints, then, there is reflected something heavenly which attracts and stimulates one to virtue.
The Saints preached effectively in simple, unadorned language, as in the case of the Cure of Ars.
But, their most effective sermon was the example of their lives.
They could say with St Paul: “To me to live is Christ.”
They could repeat the thought of St Jerome: “Christ is the breath of my lips.”
Like St John Chrysostom, they could say: “My heart is the heart of Christ.”
They could say with St Augustine: “I am only an instrument in the service of Christ” and, with St Anselm: “My eyes are the eyes of Christ.”
When we meditate on these words, which signify the height of sanctity, we feel very small, shabby and far from the Christian perfection to which we should aspire.
Perhaps we are still immersed in sin, or perhaps, we are wavering between the things of this world and the things of God, or perhaps, as yet, we have not given up our egoism and complacent mediocrity in order to offer ourselves entirely to God.
Real Christianity demands that we renounce ourselves, live the life of Christ and, make every effort to acquire perfection.”