St. Augustine

 

08/10/16

 

 

 

Click here for an article on Augustinian Maxims and Truths

Lord, our God,
we are in the shadow of your wings.
Protect us and bear us up.
You will care for us
as if we were little children,
even to our old age.
When you are our strength,
we are strong;
but when we are our own strength,
we are weak.
Our good always lives in your presence,
and we suffer when we turn our faces
away from you.
We now return to you, O Lord
that we may never turn away again. Amen.

- St. Augustine of Hippo

 

Augustine, On the Lord's Sermon on the Mount 2.3.14 

But again one might ask whether we are to pray by words or deeds and what need there is for prayer, if God already nows what is needful for us. But it is because the act of prayer clarifies and purges our heart and makes it more capable of receiving the divine gifts that are poured out for us in the spirit. God does not give heed to the ambitiousness of our prayers, because he is always ready to give to us his light, not a visible light but an intellectual and spiritual one: but we are not always read to receive it when we turn aside and down to other things out of a desire for temporal things.

 

For in prayer there occurs a turning of the heart to he who is always ready to give if we will but take what he gives: and in that turning is the purification of the inner eye when the things we crave in the temporal world are shut out; so that the vision of the pure heart can bear the pure light that shines divinely without setting or wavering: and not only bear it, but abide in it; not only without difficulty, but even with unspeakable joy, with which the blessed life is truly and genuinely brought to fulfillment.'

 

O Love of God, descend into my heart.
Enlighten the dark corners of this neglected dwelling,
and scatter there your cheerful beams.
Dwell in the soul that longs to be your temple.
Water that barren soil overrun with weeds and briars
and lost for lack of cultivating.
Make it fruitful with your dew.
Come, dear refreshment of those who languish.
Come, star and guide of those who sail amidst tempests.
You are the haven of the tossed and shipwrecked.
Come now, glory and crown of the living,
as well as the safeguard of the dying.
Come, sacred Spirit;
Come, and make me fit to receive you.

 

 

 

If you never turn aside from the good life, your tongue may be silent but your actions will cry aloud, and God will perceive your intentions; for as our ears hear each other’s voices, so do God’s ears hear our thoughts. (St. Augustine)

 

Now therefore, brethren, we urge you to praise God. That is what we are all telling each other when we say Alleluia. You say to your neighbor, “Praise the Lord!” and he says the same to you. We are all urging one another to praise the Lord, and all thereby doing what each of us urges the other to do. But see that your praise comes from your whole being; in other words, see that you praise God not with your lips and voices alone, but with your minds, your lives and all your actions.

We are praising God now, assembled as we are here in church; but when we go on our various ways again, it seems as if we cease to praise God. But provided we do not cease to live a good life, we shall always be praising God. You cease to praise God only when you swerve from justice and from what is pleasing to God. If you never turn aside from the good life, your tongue may be silent but your actions will cry aloud, and God will perceive your intentions; for as our ears hear each other’s voices, so do God’s ears hear our thoughts.

 

Because there are these two periods of time - the one that now is, beset with the trials and troubles of this life, and the other yet to come, a life of everlasting serenity and joy - we are given two liturgical seasons, one before Easter and the other after. The season before Easter signifies the troubles in which we live here and now, while the time after Easter which we are celebrating at present signifies the happiness that will be ours in the future. What we commemorate before Easter is what we experience in this life; what we celebrate after Easter points to something we do not yet possess. This is why we keep the first season with fasting and prayer; but now the fast is over and we devote the present season to praise. Such is the meaning of the Alleluia we sing.

As the use of remedies is the way to health, so this remedy [Christ] took up sinners to heal and restore them. And just as surgeons, when they bind up wounds, do it ...carefully, that there may be a certain degree of neatness in the binding, so our medicine, Wisdom, was by His assumption of humanity, adapted to our wounds, curing some of them by their opposites, some of them by their likes."  (On Christian Doctrine) 

 

Now, justification in this life is given to us according to these three things:
bulletfirst by the laver of regeneration by which all sins are forgiven
bulletthen, by a struggle with the faults from whose guilt we have been absolved
bulletthe third, when our prayer is heard, in which we say: ‘Forgive us our debts,’ because however bravely we fight against our faults, we are men; but the grace of God so aids as we fight in this corruptible body that there is reason for His hearing us as we ask forgiveness.

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Jesus stood in the midst of them, and saith to them: Peace be to you

The Lord, as you have heard, appeared to His Disciples after His Resurrection, and greeted them, saying: Peace be to you . This is indeed peace, and the salutation of Salvation; for salutation receives its name from salvation. And what better than that Salvation Itself should greet mankind?

For Christ is our Salvation. For He is our Salvation Who was wounded for us, and fastened with nails to the Wood, and taken down from the Wood, and laid in the sepulchre. But He rose from the sepulchre; and though His wounds were healed the scars remained. For this He judged expedient for His Disciples: that He should keep His scars to heal the wounds of their soul.

The confession of evil works is the first beginning of good works. 

 God loves each of us as if there were only one of us.

Conscience and reputation are two things.  Conscience is due to yourself, reputation to your neighbor.

If you are suffering from a bad man's injustice, forgive him lest there be two bad men. 

St. Augustine

St AugustineCome Lord, work on us, set us on fire, and clasp us close, be fragrant to us, draw us to your love, let us run to you. Amen.                           

Pray as though everything depended on God. 
Work as though everything depended on you.   

~~  St. Augustine 

 

 

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