Minute Meditations

Train Your Soul for Peace

A beloved and treasured prayer for a century, the Peace Prayer has been ascribed to Saint Francis of Assisi though, in fact, it was probably written seven centuries after his death. In fourteen simple verses, it captures the essence of soul training. Soul training is our response to the gratuity of grace that never expires and is never exhausted. The initial training can be tedious and difficult since we are born selfish and self-centered. The centripetal force of the ego makes us not only cling to personality props that we lean on for our self-worth but also promotes fears, attachments, control issues, and a sense of entitlement that hinder our surrender to grace. As we allow grace to shape us into instruments of God, we are challenged to practice the kenotic selflessness of Jesus by living lives of selfless surrender, self-denying sacrifice, and solicitous service. This selflessness is also expressed in practical ways by sowing faith, hope, love, forgiveness, and joy while consoling, understanding, and enriching the lives of others. These practices activate the centrifugal force of the Spirit that invites us to a daily death of letting go and surrendering as we walk in the footsteps of the Lord and Divine Master. As this first death becomes second nature, we prepare ourselves for the second death that leads to the imperishable crown of eternal life.

—from the book Soul Training with the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis
by Albert Haase, OFM

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