Thoughts from St. Josemaria Escriva 2

The cheerful smile for those who bother you; that silence when you're unjustly accused; your kind conversation with people you find boring and tactless; the daily effort to overlook one irritating detail or another in those who live with you… this, with perseverance, is indeed solid interior mortification.

Don't say, "that person bothers me." Think: "That person sanctifies me." (The Way, nn. 173-174)

This was a method employed by St. Therese of Lisieux as well; she succeeded so well that annoyances became no longer annoying, because her attitude towards them we so much shaped by the aspect in which they were good–as a means of showing her love for Jesus and her sisters. This way of handling annoyances from other persons is in many cases also the most effective way of resolving them; people tend to act as we expect them to–if we treat people as grumpy persons, they are more likely to be so; if we treat them as cheerful and kind persons, they are more likely to be that way. Also in this sense, then, a cheerful reaction to annoyances brought by others around us is often, though not always, an effective means that gets rid of those annoyances.

There is no excuse for those who could be scholars are are not (The Way, n. 332).You frequent the sacraments, you pray, you are chaste, but you don't study. Don't tell me you're good, you're only "goodish" (n. 337).

Formerly, when human knowledge–science–was very limited, it seemed quite feasible for a single scholar to defend and vindicate our holy faith.
Today, with the extension and the intensity of modern science, the apologists have to divide the work among themselves, if they wish to defend the Church scientifically in all fields.
You… cannot shirk this responsibility (n. 338).

St. Josemaria Escriva applies the principle of charity, that where there is a pressing human need, those with particular talents to fill that need are called to do so. And in order for the faith to be received in the manner it deserves, it is necessary for there to be many scholars of deep faith… some whose scholarship is of properly religious matters, others whose scholarship directly pertains to secular matters, but whose life is imbued with Christian spirit, manifesting the harmony of reason and faith, nature and grace–how grace ennobles nature rather than contradicting it.

St. Josemaria's claim that for one called to scholarly work, the "interior life" is insufficient, is a particular example of St. James rule, "faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead" (James 2:17). The interior life has to be expressed in deeds profitable for the building up of God's children in charity.

It's good for you to put such determination into your study, as long as you put the same determination into acquiring interior life (n. 341).

As an interior life that does not produce works of charity is barren and deserving of being cut down, so external works without an interior life are dry and of little value. Though he stresses the importance of scholarly work for those called to it, St. Josemaria Escriva avoids the activist or intellectualist error of seeing the true value of a scholar's life in his "success" in scholarly endeavors.

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