The Abandonment Prayer has become one of the better known aspects of Charles’ spirituality. It is derived from a meditation Charles composed on the death of Jesus on the Cross:
I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures—
I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul;
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you Lord, and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.
This prayer by Brother Charles encapsulates his spirituality. We, the Little Sisters of Jesus and Mary, recite this prayer every morning at the beginning of our day.
We recommend this prayer to everyone who desires to love God with greater intimacy and trust. To abandon ourselves to God’s will is the only sure road to peace of mind.
In 1987, Sr. Mary Elizabeth was interviewed on the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN). She had this to say about the Abandonment Prayer:
The first prayer we say every day is the Abandonment Prayer of Brother Charles, which is a very beautiful prayer in which we give ourselves totally to God.
Question: What does abandonment mean?
Abandonment simply means that you give yourself completely to God in such a way that you trust Him with everything that He has in mind for you, and that each morning you just give yourself to Him completely and you’re at ease and at rest because you know that He is going to take care of you. He’s not going to do it maybe your way but He’s going to do it His way, which is a lot better.
Question: What are some of the difficulties in abandoning oneself?
Well, sometimes you’re a little afraid of what is He going to want to do. You don’t always feel like you’re ready for it, but that’s what takes faith, it just takes faith. We like to make our own plans. . . . I can assure you there are many times when I thought that I could not go on with some of the things that I had to bear. It’s just trust.
And if you can trust, God will certainly take care of this matter, but give yourself to Him. That’s what we mean by abandonment. It’s when you don’t believe, believe anyhow.
Faith is believing when you don’t believe. When you do believe it’s easy—it’s when you don’t believe that you have to have faith, and when you can’t see any way out that you have to have hope.
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