- God is in complete control of all things and nothing happens without his active or permissive will. Trust that all things will work for your good.
- God knows the next 10 minutes of your life, the next hour, the next day, the next year. He knows the hour and manner of your death. Worry not about the future but pray for the grace you need to be faithful and to persevere with fear and trembling.
- When you consider that all things are known and willed by God (be it his active or permissive will) when this insight permeates your thoughts, all things become good, all things become a teacher. This is the path to freedom and contemplation.
- Teach as though everyone to whom you are speaking is among the elect. When people reject your teaching and fall away, rest in the knowledge that if God is calling them, he will provide the grace.
- Think not to much about the elect and the reprobate except that the meditation on such should lead you to contemplation and the vision of God’s glory. Rather, assume that all you meet are numbered among the elect and let your mind be free in the knowledge that some, perhaps many, are among the reprobate. This allows all work to have the stillness of contemplation and the freedom of a trusting child.
- When meditating on the reality of the reprobate, pray fervently first that you will not be numbered among them and then petition the Lord fervently for all you meet. The teaching on the elect and the reprobate should lead us to fervent pray for the salvation of others.
- The teaching on the elect and the reprobate leads to humility in that we do all works with the knowledge that God’s grace is the primary mover in our lives and our apostolates. It motivates us to pray because we realize that without God we can do nothing. And it allows us to rest in the midst of the world because we realize that God is always in charge.
- By meditating on predestination, compulsion disappears, the emotions relax, fear and anxiety dissipates, the desire and need for control are exposed as powerful lies, and the heart enters into contemplation. I learn to sit back and take in the beauty of the artwork God as formed since the beginning of time.
For I know well the plans I have in mind for you—oracle of the LORD—plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope.
When you call me, and come and pray to me, I will listen to you.
When you look for me, you will find me. Yes, when you seek me with all your heart,
I will let you find me—oracle of the LORD—and I will change your lot; I will gather you together from all the nations and all the places to which I have banished you—oracle of the LORD—and bring you back to the place from which I have exiled you.
We know that all things work for good for those who love God,* who are called according to his purpose.
For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
And those he predestined he also called; and those he called he also justified; and those he justified he also glorified.
What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?
He who did not spare his own Son but handed him over for us all, how will he not also give us everything else along with him?
For the leader. A psalm of David.
LORD, you have probed me, you know me:
you know when I sit and stand,
you understand my thoughts from afar.
You sift through my travels and my rest;
with all my ways you are familiar.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
LORD, you know it all.
Behind and before you encircle me
and rest your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
far too lofty for me to reach.
Where can I go from your spirit?
From your presence, where can I flee?
If I ascend to the heavens, you are there;
if I lie down in Sheol, there you are.
If I take the wings of dawn*
and dwell beyond the sea,*
Even there your hand guides me,
your right hand holds me fast.
If I say, “Surely darkness shall hide me,
and night shall be my light”
Darkness is not dark for you,
and night shines as the day.
Darkness and light are but one.
You formed my inmost being;
you knit me in my mother’s womb.e
I praise you, because I am wonderfully made;
wonderful are your works!
My very self you know.
My bones are not hidden from you,
When I was being made in secret,
fashioned in the depths of the earth.*
Your eyes saw me unformed;
in your book all are written down;f
my days were shaped, before one came to be.
How precious to me are your designs, O God; how vast the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the sands;
when I complete them, still you are with me.