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Being for Him


A pure intention consists in making his approval and his glory the supreme motive in our actions.


Our response to the presence of God consists first of all in frequently calling it to mind during our day and then in striving to do always, as Our Lord did, the things that please him, having a pure intention in everything we undertake.  A pure intention consists in making his approval and his glory the supreme motive in our actions, not seeking either our own pleasure or the esteem of men.

It is not an easy thing to acquire as a habitual disposition, for it is in direct conflict with the deepest thing in our fallen nature, inordinate self-love.  This self-love tends to insinuate itself almost without our knowing it into everything we do, marring if not destroying its supernatural goodness.  "It has poisoned the whole world and the mystical body of holy Church," says the Eternal Father to Saint Catherine of Siena in the Dialogues, "and through it the garden of my spouse has run to seed and given birth to putrid flowers."  Constant effort is needed, therefore, if we are to acquire purity of intention.

We must not be satisfied with just a morning offering, perhaps perfunctorily made, but frequently during the day we should turn to him whose eyes and heart are ever fixed on us and offer him as sincerely as we can whatever work or occupation we have on hand, begging him to make it serve for the building up of the Church, which is his family.

Our great model and helper in this is the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Mother of the Church.  If our actions are offered to God through her, then, according to the teaching of Saint Louis Marie de Montfort, she will lend something of her own perfect purity of love to them, making up for whatever is defective in ours and rendering them most pleasing to God and fruitful for all the family.



Father Anselm Moynihan, O.P. "Being for Him." from The Presence of God (New Hope, Kentucky: New Hope Publications, 2012).

Reprinted with permission of New Hope Publications.

The Author

Father Anselm Moynihan, O.P., (? - 1998) was an Irish Dominican priest and the founding editor of Doctrine and Life. In his spiritual classic, The Presence of God, Fr. Moynihan presents the profound teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas on the various ways in which God is present and active in our world and in our lives.

Copyright © 2012 New Hope Publications
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