If we prefer good deeds in secret, our souls will be safer and better rewarded by God

January 6, 2022 • 1 min

From The Sinner’s Guide, page 441
By Venerable Louis of Granada

Among those acts which we are free to do or not to do some are performed in public, others in secret. The former procure us temporal pleasure or advantage, while the latter bring no such reward.

In general prefer what is done in secret without any temporal recompense. You will thus preserve yourself from the snares of self-love, which, as we have already said, insinuates itself into the holiest actions.

For this reason a certain man remarkable for his piety was accustomed to say: “Do you know where God is? He is where you are not.” By this he meant that where self-interest has not penetrated, there only can God be sought and found.

We do not counsel you to follow this rule so rigidly as to exclude good deeds that are public or profitable. Oh! no; that would be a reprehensible extreme, for very often there is great merit in overcoming the promptings of self-love to which these deeds expose us.

Our intention is only to warn you against the artifices of self-love, that you may ever distrust it, particularly when it presents itself under the mask of virtue.

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