Thought for the Day – 7 December – Meditations with Antonio Cardinal Bacci (1881-1971)
The Contemplative and the Active Life
“We ought not to imagine that contemplation is a privilege exvclusive to Monks and Nuns.
In fact, it belongs to all Catholics.
It is the privilege of the peasant, artisan, or clerk, who, on his way home from work, pays a visit to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
“Here I am, my God,“ anyone of them may say.
“I am very tired.
Please give me some rest for my soul.
I am weary and worried, both in body and in soul.
I wish to love You more and to be faithful to You, until I die.
I wish to think only of You but there are so many other things which I must think about.
I have so many temptations and disturbances, which cause me to forget You and which often lead me into evil.
O God, be the light of my soul, the peace of my heart, the divine strength of my weak will. …”
Murmuring words like these, they listen to God and seem to see Him bending down towards them.
Then there is the student who has spent the day pouring over books, searching for the truth.
He goes into the Church for a moment and kneels down.
His mind is full of the tumult of thoughts, calculations and problems, never completely answered or explained in the books, written by men.
He asks God for the light which he has not found, for the answer which he has not discovered, for the peace and calm, which only He can give.
At least for a moment, all these workers and students are contemplatives.
They have left behind the noise of the world, in order to listen to the Voice of God.
But this Voice, which does not speak in words but in silence and in peace, is the Voice of contemplation.
Prayer comes afterwards, when God makes His presence felt in the soul.
In this way, no matter who or what we are, we should all be contemplatives.
In other words, we should seek, in quiet conversation with God, the truth and tranquiliity which the world cannot give us.”