I was only sixteen when I was introduced
to a stunning Spanish lady. She was
attractive physically but also had
personality. She managed to win me
early in life!
Her name was Teresa De Cepeda y Ahumada.
We know her as Saint Teresa of Jesus.
more than 10 years as a rather pampered
this woman experienced a conversion
changed her life radically. She started
an adventure that has been going ever
Her life was exciting. She was born
Spain, amid profound changes in Europe
around the world. In her forties, she
to challenge the standard traditions
embarked on a radical reform of her
family. Being a strong-minded woman
male-dominated society, she obviously
vigorous opposition, even being investigated
When she died, the sisters found a
in her breviary. Six terse sentences
in her own handwriting. They must have
a lot to her.
Let nothing disturb you;
Let nothing frighten you.
All things are passing.
God alone remains.
Patience obtains all things.
Nothing is wanting to him who possesses
God alone suffices.
In every life there are moments that
awful and moments that we deem as pleasant.
Well, Teresa disagrees. Her encounter
Jesus Christ gave her a new perspective.
Everything is ok, she claims, because
is always working in our favor. He
do otherwise because we are His.
This is why she dares to say "Let
disturb you, let nothing frighten you…"
It is true that the waves may be very
and the winds very frightening but
Teresa would say, He is always in the
Perhaps asleep. But even sound asleep,
is more powerful than all the wind
rough seas. Relax!
"All things are passing."
things' means exactly that, everything.
and failures. Health and sickness.
and joys. Hard times and good times.
Teresa had her share of pain. Her mother
died when she was fourteen years old,
she was 21 she got into a sickness
killed her (they had already prepared
tomb), most of her brothers died in
in Latin America (this was the time
Conquistadores), many Church people
hated her guts and invented all kinds
calumnies... But she knew it. "All
are passing"; why ruin your stomach
"God alone remains." Around
everything fades away. Parents die,
forget, your partner does not understand
you, your children will all leave home…
alone remains. He is the stable companion.
Nothing dissuades Him. Not even our
and our forgetfulness. In fact, the
situations are those in which, in the
of our weakness and powerlessness,
to beg for God's mercy, being convinced
the He loves us as we are. The simple
is that He is there always. Smiling,
cheering, lending a hand. Ready also
his hands if necessary to pull us out
the filth we put ourselves in.
One of her favorite saints, Saint Augustine,
expressed himself thus, "Beautiful
God, the Word with God ... He is beautiful
in heaven, beautiful on earth; beautiful
in the womb, beautiful in his parents'
beautiful in his miracles, beautiful
sufferings; beautiful in inviting to
beautiful in not worrying about death,
in giving up his life and beautiful
it up again; he is beautiful on the
beautiful in the tomb, beautiful in
Listen to the song with understanding,
let not the weakness of the flesh distract
your eyes from the splendor of his
This Beauty will always be there. For
"Patience obtains all things."
This simple statement is sheer wisdom.
does not mean to wait pointlessly;
waiting with confidence. God understands
when the best moment for something
is. God is also aware of the best way
can happen. Let God be God. Let Him
way He wants to act. Let Him be the
You just relax in your seat and enjoy
Julian of Norwich echoed much the same
centuries before. "All shall be
and all shall be well. And all manner
things shall be well."
And this bookmark finishes with a gem.
is wanting to him who possesses God.
Our hearts are infinite. They are as
as God himself. This is why only God
satisfy us. Things are just wonderful.
marriage, house, car, career, children,
are all good. But they are simply not
to fill us up. They can never ever
How many times, pitiable me, I tried
satisfaction elsewhere and it was always
a failure! How many people pass all
life wanting more, wanting it differently.
What a waste!
But if one meets God, then it is pure
"And what a great reward that
even a moment of it suffices to recompense
the soul for all the trials that it
Indeed, God suffices. God is better.
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
hereby granted for any non-commercial
provided that the content is unaltered
its original state, if this copyright