Monday, September 14, 2015


The Source of our Joy

Who does not wish to be happy and at peace?

Despite the fact that almost everyone wishes these things for themselves; many people do not find true joy or solitude because they are looking for them in the wrong way or in the wrong places. 

Some seek to discover happiness solely in their work, others in recreation, and still others in eating or attention from others.

It is true that an amount of pleasure may be found in these things, yet without God and a firm faith the delight they give will last but a moment.

So, one may ask, “Where then are true joy and happiness found?”

The answer is intricate yet simple at the same time:

“The source of all our joy is found in God, and serving Him properly.”

The Bible says that the just man is known by his joyful countenance.  

Likewise we could reverse this and say that a truly joyful countenance is the sign of a just man.  And whatever befalls him will not make him sad.

The More We Grow in Holiness the Happier We Will Become

However, this is easier said than done, and a person does not become a happy jolly saint in a day.  St. Teresa of Avila said, “God save us from sour-faced saints!”  This was because she noticed that this was a common fault among those trying to grow in holiness, and constantly tried to warn people about its dangers.

The Most Reverend Father Faber in his book, Growth in Holiness, explains how many people in their first attempt to grow in holiness become stiff and bitter.  He went on to say that it is only after they progress much further in virtue that they learn to be joyful, tender, and compassionate to those around them.  

It is the stiffness and coldness of souls trying to be holy, but have not yet reaching sanctity often turn people away from the Faith because of their sad or bitter-faced countenances.  So, let us seek to bring into our lives the vigor and holiness of the times of the beginning of the Church when Christians were known by their charity, warmth, and tenderness for every person whom God created.  This then will attract souls entrapped in their vices, and more likely bring them back to God and the Church.

When Times Are Rough

At times we all go through though times.   

But how do we respond to them? 

When in such a situation, the only way to find peace and happiness is by prayer, penance, and complete trust and submission to the will of God.  

We will not feel great when the world appears to be collapsing around us and God seems to have abandoned us.  

Yet, we must stand firm and act as though we felt no pain or sorrow, and seek ways to ignore the devil telling us to give up because all our efforts are useless.  

This will be the test of whether our faith and virtue is true or false, and perseverance in hard times is the best way to give glory to God. 

Some Practical Ways to Overcome Depression

-1- We must pray to God for strength to be strong even though we feel as everything we do is hanging by a thread.

-2- We must learn to recognize when we are starting to get unsettled or losing our peace.

-3- Next we should try and find things to be grateful and happy about.  Often going for a walk a midst God’s creation can help with this.  The beautiful flowers, swaying trees, tinkling creeks, and puffs of clouds are all signs of God’s love for us, and a great way to remind us that we are loved.

-4- Another thing that sometimes helps is finding a reason to laugh at ourselves.  The devil hates to be laughed at, and if we laugh at him; his pride is dreadfully wounded, and he often flees from us.  Similarly, if we laugh at ourselves for thinking that we are so good as not to feel sadness, we will often be humbled and then find that it was only our pride or lack of trust in God that made us sad!
Final Conclusion

Once doing everything we can, we must then be patient with all of the tough situations in which we find ourselves. 

All of the saints explain that God often tests those whom He loves.  The more He loves us, the worse our trials will be in order to more fully purify our love. 

At times God wishes for us to feel deserted by both Him and all of mankind.  For, if we still do well and avoid evil, even when we do not feel like it; God will be all the more glorified and we shall all the more obtain graces for ourselves and others.  It is a common saying among the saints that, “One ‘Blessed be God’ in adversity is worth more than a thousand in time of peace.”

So, let us make it our goal that whenever we are starting to feel sad, to try to dispel it from our midst immediately.  And if this is not possible; let us make the resolution to gain all the graces for ourselves and others that we can while in such a state!


  1. Dear Rita,
    How did you know I needed your insightful words today? I believe God knew I needed to read this now. Funny how Divine Providence works. I had been praying several Rosaries for some depression and discouragement I've had today. Then I open my email and your post is there! Thank you Rita and thanks be to God! I printed your post out to have to reread. Good stuff! Thank you again for your wise words.

    United In Prayer With Jesus & Mary,

  2. Dear Melissa,

    God surely works in mysterious ways!

    Would you believe that at the end of last month I had not planned to post here again until next year. But, then God sort of just inspired me to write on this subject, then everything fit together, and so I could hardly help posting it!

    I am so grateful to God that what I write is able to help the few who read what I write!

    It makes all the effort I put into it worth while a thousand times over!

    Keep fighting!

    Life will be hard, but God will help us if we only trust in Him!