A book of prayers to the Holy Face of Jesus

Gazing In the Crystal Ball

Look Up! The Path Reaches Out And Up Before You!


We all have had a time when we dream of our tomorrows and the life we would like for ourselves and for our families. But we tend to be short-sighted in the destination. We cannot look past the comforts of today or of tomorrow!


Pope Leo the XIII in 1893 in the Encyclical on the Holy Rosary entitled “Laetitiae Sanctae” (“Of Holy Joy”). enunciates three areas of concern and then offers the mysteries of the Rosary as a necessary remedy.  Pope Leo wrote:


“There are three influences which appear to Us to have the chief place in effecting a downgrade movement of society.  These are–


1. The distaste for a simple and laborious life;


2. Repugnance to suffering of any kind; and


3. The forgetfulness of the future life.”


Let’s address these at a deeper level along with some remedies:


First, the distaste for a simple and laborious life.  Hard work actually brings greater satisfaction to times of rest.  The fact is, high expectations of this world like we have today, breed discontent and resentments. Unbridled desire of living a life of pleasure become demoralizing and we miserably cower and sink under the hardships of the battle of life.


Next, repugnance to suffering of any kind.  Suffering, sorrows, accidents, burdens and difficulties are part of life in this valley of tears. Acceptance of this truth leads to a kind of paradoxical serenity. Rejection of it and indulgence in unrealistic notions that all suffering is unreasonable leads to resentments and further unhappiness.  Recall John 11:16.  “Then Thomas (also known as Didymus) said to the rest of the disciples, ‘Let us also go, that we may die with him.’”


Last, the forgetfulness of the future life.  How little most modern people thinks of heaven. Our main preoccupation seems to be making this world a more comfortable and pleasant place. Even in our so-called spiritual life, our prayers bespeak a worldly preoccupation: Lord, fix my finances, fix my heath, get me a better job. This life was not a home but a dwelling-place, not our destination, but a stage in the journey. But we pursue the false goods of this world and their true enduring happiness is not only set aside, but banished and entirely erased from their memory.  We should heed the words of St. Paul, “We have not here a lasting city, but we seek one which is to come.”  Hebrews 13:14.


In the end, our home is in heaven and we ought to be solicitous of it and eagerly seek its shores. It should be a frequent meditation, and to be with God forever, the deepest longing of our soul.”

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