Working as God’s Tenants


We desire to be paid for what we do; and when we are truly wise, we work for God; we choose that professional, of good works, which he patronizes, and we are certain of our wages…. Religion and work should never be disjointed.

For every good work, every kindly thought, or tiny act of humble helpfulness, God gives a reward, a merited return of sustenance for our souls, or answer to our pleading for some purpose. The orderliness of heaven cannot be disturbed, and if our free will is not given wholly to the act, in a consecration clear and sweet, the corresponding mercy cannot approach us. This is our dignity – we are not paupers before God, though poor. We are not his impotent and lackadaisical children when we are his; but [strong], though crushed to the earth in adoration. For God’s mercy, we give our free will, in each moment of our life. This giving of a work to merit a petitioned benefit bestows the definiteness and worth upon every hour of religious life. It may be fatiguing to think of meriting at each step, but it is also fatiguing to study Greek or Mathematics. The things of most worth are not cultivated without labor. And to a imagine that it would be more generous to do something for God without reckoning at all upon a merciful return from Him of any sort, is not intelligent virtue… for God will give mercy in return to every act worthy of reward.

Servant of God Rose Hawthorne

Rose Hawthorne Lathrop, Mother Mary Alphonsa (=1926), was the daughter of Nathaniel Hawthorne and the foundress of the Dominican Sisters for the Care of Incurable Cancer.

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