“In our age, the road to holiness necessarily passes through the world of action…. He who wills adventure will experience it—according to the measure of his courage. He who wills sacrifice will be sacrificed—according to the measure of his purity of heart.” (Hammarskjold)
The path to holiness is one that invites us to aspire toward purity of heart;"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God"(Matthew 5:8). To attain this purity while living in our "world of action" poses great challenges and calls us first to surrender, to act with courage, and ultimately to sacrifice.
Though we share the call to holiness, the way in which we fulfill this call varies depending on our state in life and God's true will for us. Hammarskjold reminds us that this is also according to the measure of our courage and of our purity of heart. In order to respond to the Lord's call and be willing to sacrifice and strive toward purity we must first begin by encountering our Lord through the silence and solitude of prayer.
It is important that we take time away from our "world of action" to seek the serenity of our Lord. "There should be at least a room, or some corner where no one will find you and disturb you or notice you. You should be able to untether yourself from the world and set yourself free, loosing all the fine strings and strands of tension that bind you, by sight, by sound, by thought, to the presence of other men. "But thou, when thou shalt pray, enter into thy chamber, and having shut the door, pray to thy Father in secret" Once you have found such a place, be content with it. (Thomas Merton)
Lord, help us to recognize the importance of solitude and silence of prayer as we seek to serve You within this world of action. Provide us with the courage and strength to pursue the path to holiness despite the difficulty we may face. Thank you Lord for the gift of faith and the desire to follow You. May we strive each day to close ourselves away from the world as to better hear Your voice and carry out Your will. Amen. (C.C.)