First Notebook – Paragraphs 371-380
J.M.J. Vilnius, February 4, 1935
371. Jesus, King of Mercy, again the time has come when I am alone with You. Therefore I beg You, by all the love with which Your Heart burns, to destroy completely within me my self-love and, on the other hand, to enkindle in my heart the fire of Your purest love.
372. In the evening, after the conference, I heard these words: I am with you. During this retreat, I will strengthen you in peace and in courage so that your strength will not fail in carrying out My designs. Therefore, you will cancel out your will absolutely in this retreat and, instead, My complete will shall be accomplished in you. Know that it will cost you much, so write these words on a clean sheet of paper: “From today on, my own will does not exist,” and the cross out the page. And on the other side write these words: “From today on, I do the will of God everywhere, always, and in everything.” Be afraid of nothing; love will give you strength and make the realization of this easy.
373. In the fundamental meditation about the goal; that is, of choosing love: the soul must love; it has need of living. The soul must divert the stream of its love, but not into the mud or into a vacuum, but into God. How I rejoice when I reflect on this, for I feel clearly that He Himself is in my heart. Just Jesus alone! I love creatures insofar as they help me to become united with God. I love all people because I see the image of God in them.
374. + J.M.J. Vilnius, February 4, 1935
X From today on, my own will does not exist. X
The moment I knelt down to cross out my own will, as the Lord had bid me to do, I heard this voice in my soul: From today on, do not fear God’s judgment, for you will not be judged.
+ J. M. J. Vilnius, February 4, 1935
From today on, I do the Will of God everywhere, always, and in everything. (note88)
+ J. M. J. Vilnius, February 8, 1935
375. Particular interior practice; that is, the examination of conscience. Self-denial of my own will.
I. The denial of my reason. Subjecting it to the reason of those who represent God God to Me here on earth.
II. The denial of my will. Doing the will of God, which is revealed in the will of those who represent God to me and which is contained in the rule of our order.
III. The denial of my judgment. Accepting immediately and without reflection, analysis or reasoning all orders given by those who represent God to me.
IV. The denial of my tongue. I will not give it the least bit of freedom; but in one case only I will give it complete freedom; that is, in proclaiming the glory of God. Whenever I receive Holy Communion, I will ask Jesus to fortify and cleanse my tongue that I may not injure my neighbor with it. That is why I have the greatest respect for the rule which speaks about silence.
376. My Jesus, I trust that Your grace will help me to carry out these resolutions. Although the above points are contained in the vow of obedience. I want to practice these things in a special way, because this is the essence of the religious life. Merciful Jesus, I beg You fervently to enlighten my mind so that I may come to know You better, You who are the Infinite Being, and that I may get to know myself better, who am nothingness itself.
377. Concerning Holy Confession. We should derive two kinds of profit from Holy Confession:
1. We come to confession to be healed;
2. We come to be educated – like a small child, our soul has constant need of education.
O my Jesus, I understand these words to their very depths, and I know from my own experience that, on its own strength, the soul will not go far; it will exert itself greatly and will do nothing for the glory of God; it will err continually, because our mind is darkened and does not know how to discern its own affairs. I shall pay special attention to two things: firstly, I will choose, in making my confession, that which humiliates me most, even if it be a trifle, but something that costs me much, and for that reason I will tell it; secondly, I will practice contrition, not only during confession, but during every self-examination, and I will arouse within myself an act of perfect contrition, especially when I am going to bed. One more word: a soul which sincerely wants to advance in perfection must observe strictly the advice given by the spiritual director. There is as much holiness as there is dependence.
378. Once, as I was talking with my spiritual director, I had an interior vision – quicker than lightning – of his soul in great suffering, in such agony that God touches very few souls with such fire. The suffering arises from this work. There will come a time when this work, which God is demanding so very much, will be as though utterly undone. And then God will act with great power, which will give evidence of its authenticity. It will be a new splendor for the Church, although it has been dormant in it from long ago. That God is infinitely merciful, no one can deny. He desires everyone to know this before He comes again as Judge. He wants souls to come to know Him first as King of mercy. When this triumph comes, we shall already have entered the new life in which there is no suffering. But before this, your soul [of the spiritual director] will be surfeited with bitterness at the sight of the destruction of your efforts. However, this will only appear to be so, because what God has once decided upon, He does not change. But although this destruction will be such only in outward appearance, the suffering will be real. When will this happen? I do not know. How long will it last? I do not know. (note89) But God has promised a great grace especially to you and to all those . . . who will proclaim My great mercy. I shall protect them Myself at the hour of death, as My own glory. And even if the sins of souls were as dark as night, when the sinner turns to My mercy, he gives Me the greatest praise and is the glory of My Passion. When a soul extols My goodness, Satan trembles before it and flees to the very bottom of hell.
379. During one of the adorations, Jesus promised me that: With souls that have recourse to My mercy and with those that glorify and proclaim My great mercy to others, I will deal according to My infinite mercy at the hour of their death.
My Heart is sorrowful, Jesus said, because even chosen souls do not understand the greatness of My mercy. Their relationship [with Me] is, in certain ways, imbued with mistrust. Oh, how much that wounds My Heart! Remember My Passion, and if you do not believe My words, at least believe My wounds.
380. I make no movement, no gesture after my own liking, because I am bound by grace; I always consider what is more pleasing to Jesus.