In the 12th century, God gave his people a spiritual giant named Bernard. Officially, he was St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Abbot of the Cistercian monastery in Clairvaux, France. Also God started on another giant. Francis was born in 1181 in the Village of Assisi. Let us look at Bernard for a moment.
Bernard was spiritually ambitious for himself and for everyone. He thought that God wanted far more from all of us than the 10 Commandments. He thought that God wanted all of us to be intimate with Himself. He thought that we should always be reaching beyond ourselves for God. But then, we would discover something. It is impossible. We cannot touch God no matter how much we try. He can touch us, but we are powerless. So then we must simply place ourselves in His hands and wait on His good graces.
Bernard knew that God was intimacy within us. He will give us the gift, but only if we are anxious, if we are ambitious, if we are reaching. So, we should constantly be reaching beyond ourselves, because this enables God to give us what He wants us to have.
The whole process does not make us proud. We are not doing it. We are trying and failing. God gets the job done. Intimacy is His gift to us. The process reminds us of who we are: children dependent upon a Father. In our spirituality, we do not achieve; God achieves. We simply get out of his way.
When God is going to do something wonderful, He begins with a difficulty. When He is going to do something very wonderful, He begins with an impossibility.
Fr. James O’Leary