Some people are just bigger than life. While we admire them, it’s hard to imagine ever doing what they did. This includes great intellects and athletes, care givers…. people from every walk of life who live in an extraordinary way. I read yesterday about Green Beret Colonel Paris Davis who was awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroics during the Vietnam war. “Crawling nearly 150 yards and wounded by enemy grenade fragments, he rescued three, directed the helicopter extraction of his wounded troops while refusing medical evacuation for himself.”
The saints and martyrs are bigger than life. The martyrs give up their very life in order to follow the will of God. How are they able to do that…. I just don’t think I could do that.
St. Augustine speaks to that gap between the glorious martyrs and the rest of us. He writes: “In heaven the glorious martyrs will be resplendent with the special light that distinguishes them …. so let us celebrate their feasts as it is no small part of imitation to rejoice together in the virtues of those who are better than we are. They are great, we are little; but the Lord has blessed the little with the great (Ps 115:13). They have gone ahead of us; they tower over us like giants. If we are not capable of following them in action, let us follow in affection; if not in glory, then certainly in joy and gladness; if not in merit, then in desire; if not in suffering, then in fellow feeling; if not in excellence, then in our close relationship with them .….. we are all in attendance upon the same Lord, all following the same teacher, accompanying the same leader, joined to the same head, wending our way to the same Jerusalem, pursuing the same charity, and embracing the same unity.” (The Works of Saint Augustine, Magnificat, 3-7-23)
God may call some of us one day to heroic sacrifice, maybe even to martyrdom. If he does, he will give us the grace necessary to be able to say “yes”. For the rest of us, let us pay attention to St. Augustine’s encouragement to “follow the glorious martyrs in affection, in joy and gladness, in desire, in our close relationship with them”. Let us keep our eyes on the Lord knowing that in Christ we will all make it home. And that is very good news.
One thought on “The Lord Blesses The Little With The Great”
I have so many saints as friends, both declared saints and living saints. Mother Mary, st Joseph, St. Michael, St. Bridget, St Jude, St Anthony are my constant intercessors. The saints that live with me are the fathers caring for and providing for their families, mothers constantly being open to life and laying down their lives for their children, those who serve the poor. Thanks for all their examples of holiness🙌🏻