The Little Green Pea

Jesus taught us the two greatest commandments when he said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and the first commandment. And the second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22: 37-39) St. Therese understood and lived out both of these commandments of Our Lord to a heroic degree. She exemplified the living out of the second commandment when she went out of her way to spend time with the nuns in the convent who appeared depressed or lonely. She reached out habitually to those who were suffering or who had difficult personalities.

St. Therese spoke about the importance of fraternal charity in the following story. “Oh! the unfathomable tenderness of God’s exquisite mercy towards the weak and imperfect. I marvel when I see how He always seems to surround them with His protecting love. We should react in the same way to the peculiar needs of our neighbour. Even in nature we have a faint image of this provident concern of the Creator when we compare the course bean with the little green pea. Although both must endure alike the heat of the day and the chill of night, yet the attractive little pea, you will notice, has not received the extra protection of the tough outer covering of the unattractive bean. Therefore in imitation of Our Heavenly Father let us also bestow a more indulgent love and protective care on those who have the greater need.” (My Sister Saint Therese, p. 131-132)

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