December 10, 2018 – Kiahk 1, 1735
In everything we do this blessed season, let us remember these words of St. Augustine:
Wanting to be feared and loved by other people,
for no other reason than to experience a joy that is really no joy,
is a miserable life. It is just worthless showing off.
It leads to not loving God or devoutly fearing Him.
In human society, there are certain jobs that make it necessary
to be loved and feared by other people.
The enemy of our true happiness therefore presses hard on us,
scattering his traps of “Well done! Well done!” everywhere –
so that, while we eagerly pick them up, we may be caught by surprise,
and separate our joy from God’s truth, attaching it to the deceits of other people.
Then we take pleasure in being loved and feared, not for the sake of God,
but instead of God.
Truly the one who praises is better off than the one who is praised.
For the one who praised was pleased by the gift of God in man,
but the one who was praised was better pleased with the gift of man than with the gift of God.
St. Augustine, Confessions