As our national holiday of Thanksgiving approaches, how can we be grateful with a particularly Salesian heart?
St. Francis de Sales’ suggests we delight in all God’s inspirations within us, and that we accept with gratitude even the crosses we discover in our lives.
“Do you, my daughter, resolve to accept whatever inspirations God may vouchsafe you, heartily; and when they offer themselves, receive them as the ambassadors of your Heavenly King, seeking alliance with you. Hearken gently to their propositions, foster the love with which you are inspired, and cherish the holy Guest. Give your consent, and let it be a full, loving, steadfast consent to His holy inspirations; for, so doing, God will reckon your affection as a favor, although truly we can confer none upon Him. But, before consenting to inspirations which have respect to important or extraordinary things, guard against self-deception, by consulting your spiritual guide, and let him examine whether the inspiration be real or no..
Consent once given, you must carefully seek to produce the intended results, and carry out the inspiration, the crown of true virtue; for to give consent, without producing the result thereof, were like planting a vine without meaning it to bear fruit. All this will be greatly promoted by careful attention to your morning exercises, and the spiritual retirement already mentioned, because therein you learn to carry general principles to a special application.”
Source: Introduction to the Devout Life, Part 2, Chapter 18