Mary Vitamin for September 30th
: St. Therese and Our Lady of the Smile
St. Therese of Lisieux
"All of a sudden the Blessed Virgin appeared beautiful to me, so beautiful that never had I seen anything so attractive; her face was suffused with an ineffable benevolence and tenderness, but what penetrated to the very depths of my soul was the ravishing smile of the Blessed Virgin."
Throughout the following excerpt from Fr. Irala's book, Achieving Peace of Heart, one can also see the wisdom of St. Therese's "Little Way" which was full of small mortifications. St. Therese tried to behave in a way opposite to the way she felt.
"In fear or anger the eyes become hard, staring, and blink scarcely at all. The road to victory in moments of irritation is to relax the eyes deliberately, blink often and try to smile with the eyes. In a state of emotion the voice tends to be hard and trembling. So, in a moment of wrath, you should keep quiet or answer very softly. Speak in a stronger tone of confidence when you feel fear, and in moments of sadness use a more animated tone of voice. The Japanese have a more poetical expression: 'When the face smiles, the sun come out in the heart.' We should, then, relax and soften the lines of facial expression and unclench tense hands in emotional moments."
Father Narciso Irala, S.J, Achieving Peace of Heart, (Roman Catholic Books), 93.
Today I will try to keep the thought of Our Lady's appearance to St. Therese in my mind. I will try to smile more and while doing this I will think of Our Lady's smile and how it had the curing effect upon St. Therese and penetrated to the depths of her soul. In this small way, I can try to bring the Immaculate to those around me.
Make an effort to radiate joy, which is the fruit of the Spirit and a characteristic mark of the kingdom of God. God is joy. We have no reason to be unhappy. Christ, wanting to share his joy with the disciples, prayed that 'my joy may be in you and your joy be complete.' Jesus must have radiated joy and you should do the same, in your eyes, attitude, the way you walk, the way you listen, and your whole being.
Thirsting for God, (Servant Publications: 2000), 152.
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Thanks be to God for graces received.