“Previous experience teaches that, in order not to lose the right way in the midst of such spiritual dangers, there is no better protection than obedience toward an enlightened religious director. It is a mysterious fact that obedience is efficacious against the powers of darkness—as is God’s unique mercy in placing such a guide at the side of an afflicted soul—but it is a fact.”
St Edith Stein Essays On Woman (The Collected Works of Edith Stein Book 2)
Reading this today on the Memorial of St. Teresa of Avila I of course immediately thought of how much she would have agreed with this.
Just one of the many things I love about St. Teresa was her obedience and her willingness to literally throw her writings in the fire if so ordered so. In fact, she did just this regarding her reflections on the Song of Solomon. It was only because her nuns had managed to keep copies of it that we have it today.
I just recently read through her collected works again and I only love her more. Obedience to those over us is the training of the will to be able to be more obedient to God. Obedience to human superiors is difficult, especially when we believe they are wrong.
Often we just want to be obedient when we are already 100 percent on board with something. This causes no training in humility.
Obedience to God seems even more difficult despite knowing that he loves us and will only give us the good we need, we somehow still think we know better.
In “The Way of Perfection” St. Teresa writes
“fiat voluntas tua: Your will, Lord, be done in me in every way and manner that you, my Lord, want. If you want it to be done with trials, strengthen me and let them come; if with persecutions, illnesses, dishonors, and a lack of life’s necessities, here I am; I will not turn away, my Father, nor is it right that I turn my back on you. Since your Son gave you this will of mine in the name of all, there’s no reason for any lack on my part. But grant me the favor of your kingdom that I may do your will, since he asked for this kingdom for me, and use me as you would your own possession, in conformity with your will.Way of Perfection
I wish I could actually practice this and not just write about it.