Enduring Little Trials

It should be our principal business, to conquer ourselves, and, from day to day, to go on increasing in strength and perfection. Above all, however, it is necessary for us to strive to conquer our little temptations, such as fits of anger, suspicions, jealousies, envy, deceitfulness, vanity, attachments, and evil thoughts. For in this way we shall acquire strength to subdue greater ones. -St. Francis de Sales

When an old monk was asked how he could bear the noise of some shepherd boys near him, he answered: “I was at first inclined to say something to them; but I thought better of it, and said to myself, ‘If I cannot endure so little as this, how shall I endure greater trials, when they come to me?'”

St Francis Xavier acted in the same way on occasion, and said that we must not deceive ourselves; for whoever does not conquer himself in trifles, will not be able to do so in greater matters.

Text from A Year With the Saints (New York: P.J. Kenedy & Sons, 1891).

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