Saint Teresa of Avila (1515-1582), Carmelite, Doctor of the Church
Way of Perfection, 17 (�ICS publications)
“Lord, what about him?” … “What concern is it of yours? You follow me.”
God doesn’t lead all by one path, and perhaps the one who thinks she is walking along a very lowly path is in fact higher in the eyes of the Lord. So, not because all in this house practice prayer must all be contemplatives; that’s impossible. And it would be very distressing for the one who isn’t a contemplative if she didn’t understand this truth…
I spent fourteen years never being able to practice meditation without reading. There will be many persons of this sort, and others who will be unable to meditate even with the reading but able only to pray vocally, and in this vocal prayer they will spend most of their time… There are a number of other persons of this kind. If humility is present, I don’t believe they will be any the worse off in the end but will be very much the equals of those who receive many delights; and in a way they will be more secure, for we do not know if the delights are from God or from the devil…
Those who do not receive these delights walk with humility, suspecting that this lack is their own fault, always concerned about making progress. They don’t see anyone shed a tear without thinking that if they themselves don’t shed any they are very far behind in the service of God. And perhaps they are much more advanced, for tears, even though they be good, are not all perfect. In humility, mortification, detachment, and the other virtues there is always greater security. There is nothing to fear; don’t be afraid that you will fail to reach the perfection of those who are very contemplative.
via The Daily Gospel