Thérèse de Lisieux, fully Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. born Marie-Françoise-Thérèse Martin

Thérèse de Lisieux, fully Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. born Marie-Françoise-Thérèse Martin
1873
1897

French Carmelite Nun also known as "The Little Flower of Jesus" or Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face

Author Quotes

As I grew older I loved the good God more and more, and very frequently did I offer Him my heart, using the words my mother had taught me. I strove in all my actions to please Jesus and was most watchful never to offend Him.

How I thirst for Heaven-that blessed habitation where our love for Jesus will have no limit! But to get there we must suffer... we must weep... Well, I wish to suffer all that shall please my Beloved, I wish to let Him do just as He wills with His "little ball."

I strive to work by faith though bereft of its consolations. I have made more acts of Faith in this last year than during all the rest of my life.

Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.

The world's thy ship and not thy home.

Yes, my Beloved, it is thus that my life's brief day shall be spent before Thee. No other means have I of proving my love than to strew flowers; that is, to let no little sacrifice escape me, not a look, not a word, to avail of the very least actions and do them for Love. I wish to suffer for Love's sake and for Love's sake even to rejoice; thus shall I strew flowers. Not one shall I find without shedding its petals for Thee...and then I will sing, I will always sing, even if I must gather my roses in the very midst of thorns - and the longer and sharper the thorns the sweeter shall be my song.

But on whom shall our poor heart lavish its love? Who shall be found that is great enough to be the recipient of its treasures? Will a human being know how to comprehend them, and above all will he be able to repay? There exists but one Being capable of comprehending love; it is Jesus; He alone can give us back infinitely more than we shall ever give to him.

How shall I show my love is proved by deeds? Well - the little child will strew flowers...she will embalm the Divine Throne with their fragrance, will sing with silvery voice the canticle of love.

I tell you that it is enough to recognize one's nothingness and to abandon one's self like a child in the arms of God.

My God, I choose all. I do not want to be a saint by halves. I am not afraid to suffer for You. I fear only one thing — that I should keep my own will. So take it, for I choose all that You will.

There is no artist who does not like his work praised, and the Divine Artist of souls is pleased when we do not stop at the exterior, but penetrating even to the inmost sanctuary which He has chosen for His dwelling, we admire its beauty.

Yes, the figure of this world passeth away, soon shall we see new heavens; a more radiant sun will brighten with its splendors ethereal seas and infinite horizons... We shall no longer be prisoners in a land of exile, all will be at an end and with our Heavenly Spouse we shall sail o'er boundless waters; now our harps are hung upon the willows that border the rivers of Babylon, but in the day of our deliverance what harmonies will then be heard! With what joy shall we not make every chord of our instruments to vibrate! Today, we weep remembering Sion... how shall we sing the songs of the Lord in a strange land?

Charity gave me the key to my vocation. I understood that the Church being a body composed of different members, the most essential, the most noble of all the organs would not be wanting to her; I understood that the Church has a heart and that this heart is burning with love; that it is love alone which makes the members work, that if love were to die away apostles would no longer preach the Gospel, martyrs would refuse to shed their blood. I understood that love comprises all vocations, that love is everything, that it embraces all times and all places because it is eternal!

How sweet is the way of Love! True, one may fall, one may not be always faithful, but Love, knowing how to draw profit from all, very quickly consumes whatsoever may displease Jesus, leaving naught but humble and profound peace in the innermost soul.

I too am consoled by an interior voice. The Saints encourage me from above, they say to me: 'So long as thou art in fetters thou canst not fulfill thy mission; but later, after thy death - then will be the time of thy conquests'.

My whole strength lies in prayer and sacrifice, these are my invincible arms; they can move hearts far better than words, I know it by experience. I have not the courage to force myself to seek beautiful prayers in books; not knowing which to choose I act as children do who cannot read; I say quite simply to the good God what I want to tell Him, and He always understands me.

There is only one way to force the good God not to judge at all, and that is to present one's self to Him with empty hands. When I think of this word: 'I will soon come and I carry My reward with Me to give to each one according to his works ', I say to myself, He will be very embarrassed for me because I have no works. Well, He will have to give me according to His own works.

You are not sufficiently trusting, you fear God too much. I assure you that this grieves Him. Do not be afraid of going to purgatory because of its pain, but rather long not to go there because this pleases God who imposes this expiation so regretfully. From the moment that you try to please Him in all things, if you have the unshakable confidence that He will purify you at every instant in His love and will leave in you no trace of sin, be very sure that you will not go to purgatory.

Even now I know it: yes, all my hopes will be fulfilled... yes... the Lord will work wonders for me which will surpass infinitely my immeasurable desires.

I am convinced that one should tell one's spiritual director if one has a great desire for Communion, for Our Lord does not come from Heaven every day to stay in a golden ciborium; He comes to find another heaven, the heaven of our soul in which He loves to dwell.

I understood that every flower created by Him is beautiful, that the brilliance of the rose and the whiteness of the lily do not lessen the perfume of the violet or the sweet simplicity of the daisy. I understood that if all the lowly flowers wished to be roses, nature would no longer be enameled with lovely hues. And so it is in the world of souls, Our lord's living garden.

O my God, Thou knowest I have never desired but to love Thee alone. I seek no other glory. Thy Love has gone before me from my childhood, it has grown with my growth, and now it is an abyss the depths of which I cannot fathom.

There, we shall meet with no indifferent looks, because all the Saints will be indebted to each other. No envious glances will be seen; the happiness of every one of the elect will be the happiness of all. With the Martyrs we shall be like to the Martyrs; with the Doctors we shall be as the Doctors; with the Virgins, as the Virgins; and just as the members of a family are proud of one another, so shall we be of our brethren, without the least jealousy. Who knows even if the joy we shall experience in beholding the glory of the great Saints, and knowing that by a secret disposition of Providence we have contributed thereunto, who knows if this joy will not be as intense and sweeter perhaps, than the happiness they will themselves possess.

You knew all my intimate thoughts and cleared up all my doubts. I once told you how astonished I was that God does not give equal glory in heaven to all His chosen. I was afraid they were not at all equally happy. You made me bring Daddy’s tumbler and put it by the side of my thimble. You filled them both with water and asked me which was fuller. I told you they were both full to the brim and that it was impossible to put more water in them than they could hold. And so, Mother darling, you made me understand that in heaven God will give His chosen their fitting glory and that the last will have no reason to envy the first. By such means, you made me understand the most sublime mysteries and gave my soul its essential food.

For a long time I had been asking myself why souls did not all receive the same amount of grace. Jesus deigned to instruct me about this mystery. Before my eyes He placed the book of nature and I understood that all the flowers created by Him are beautiful... that, if all the little flowers wanted to be roses, nature would lose her springtime garb. The same is true of the world of souls, the Lord's living garden.

Author Picture
First Name
Thérèse de Lisieux, fully Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. born Marie-Françoise-Thérèse Martin
Birth Date
1873
Death Date
1897
Bio

French Carmelite Nun also known as "The Little Flower of Jesus" or Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face