“If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself.” — St. Matt. 16:24.
We must above all labor to mortify, to root out our predominant passion; I mean by this, that inclination, that vice, that bad habit which governs us and leads us into sin. This is the king. When once captured, the battle is won. — Rodriguez.
St. Ignatius frequently said to a novice who was of an extremely vivacious and fiery temperament: “My son, conquer yourself, and you will have in heaven a crown more splendid than many others who are more meek of character.” One day the master of novices complained of him as being unmanageable. The saint replied: “I think he of whom you complain has made more progress in virtue in a few months than another whom you praise so much has made in a year.”
It might be supposed of St. Francis of Sales that he was of a character naturally sweet. It was by virtue alone that he acquired this admirable sweetness with which he ravished all hearts. Anger, he was heard to say, was the passion he had most difficulty in conquering.
Lord, I acknowledge that my pride governs me. I will humble myself without ceasing. I have sought to satisfy myself in all things; I now renounce all self-seeking. I have prayed with coldness and indifference; I will meditate henceforth on the goodness of God, and perpetually adore Him.