Spiritual Combat

At the end of his fast, Jesus saw the spiritual struggle against the Adversary, the Satan who comes to tempt him. During the mission, which takes place in Dijon from 4 March to 2 April 1900, Elizabeth notes in her Journal the strengths of the teaching received. Following the instruction of Saturday, March 18 at 9 am, she writes: “Life is a struggle” (Jb 7: 1). All our existence will be tempted, either in one thing or in another. Temptation is not a sin by itself. It is not a sin even if one finds satisfaction there, if as soon as one perceives one, one diverts one’s thoughts without even trying to fight against the idea that pursues our imagination. The best thing is to think of something quite different. God has shown us weapons against temptation. “Watch and pray” (Mt 26:41). With God we are sure of victory He never sends temptation without giving us sufficient grace to resist it. Yes, “I can do everything in Him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13). (J 73)

This received teaching penetrates the soul of Elizabeth and in the evening of her life, she writes at length to her young friend, Françoise de Sourdon : “Remember that” He has chosen you in Him before the creation that you may be immaculate and pure in His presence, in love “(Eph 1: 4), it is again St. Paul who says this. Therefore, do not fear the struggle, the temptation: “When I am weak,” cried the Apostle, “then I am strong, for the virtue of Jesus Christ dwells in me” (2 Cor 12,10.9 They are seven years apart, and Elizabeth recognizes in the boiling character of her young friend her own character as a child. Elizabeth had a volcanic character and made anger “very devilish” said her sister Guite. However, out of love for her mother and God, Elizabeth will fight her fault, acting and asking for Jesus’ help. His first confession and especially his first communion will help him to change in depth. Can we count on the help of the sacraments of the Church to fight against temptation, to lead our spiritual struggles?

At the beginning of her Journal, that is, in 1899 – she was 19 – she wrote: “Today I had the joy of offering my Jesus several sacrifices on my dominant defect [anger], but how they cost me! I recognize my weakness there. It seems to me, when I receive an unjust observation, that I feel my blood boil in my veins, my whole being revolts! … Nevertheless, Jesus was with me, I heard his voice in the depths of my heart; I was ready to bear everything for the love of Him! “(J 1). Elizabeth knew the temptation, the fight against her faults. She has remained vigilant, knowing how much nature, left to itself, can fall back into its faults. The love of Jesus inspires her to lead the battle. With her own experience, she wants to help us, as she wrote at the end of her life to her friend Charles Hallo: “You will have struggles to support, my little brother, you will encounter obstacles to the path of Life, but do not be discouraged, call me. Yes, call your little sister, you shall thus increase the happiness of her heaven; she will be so happy to help you to triumph, to remain worthy of God “(L 342). In the communion of the saints, let us not hesitate to appeal to Elizabeth in our struggles, our struggles, and our temptations.



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