Again from In Conversation with God:
One of the clearest symptoms of lukewarmness having entered into a soul is precisely such an abandoning of the Cross, a contempt for little mortifications, a scorning of anything that in some way involves sacrifice and self-denial........The person who abandons mortifications is inevitably ensnared by his senses and becomes incapable of any supernatural thought.
There is no progress in the interior life without a spirit of sacrifice and mortification. St. John of the Cross says that if few people reach a high state of union with God it is because so many do not want to. And the same saint writes: and if anyone wants one day to possess Christ, never let him seek him without the Cross.
One of the best parts of living in a small parish community is that you become friends with people of all ages. You're not stratified into "Youth", "Singles", "Young Marrieds", etc. So one Sunday I was talking to a friend who is retired and I was whining on about first one thing and then another. This was hard. That was hard. Couldn't just ONE worthwhile thing be easy?
And Chuck looked me straight in the face and gave me the answer I needed to hear:
Just no. And I've carried that conversation with me for years now.
And, by the way, it's why even as you get older, you have a duty to still be involved in your parish. Because there are people like me that you need to talk to and tell the truth to.
He never reads this blog, but I'll say it anyway. Thank you, Chuck. Thanks for telling me the truth. Even when it wasn't what I wanted to hear.