How the Wicked Praise God

“Whether the world wills it or no,” God explains to St. Catherine, “it offers me glory.”

True, the intent of the wicked is to insult God. But the ways of the wicked are not wise, and the fruits of their wickedness are not as anticipated.

From day to day, the “people of the world” may observe that the earth does not open to swallow them up for their sins. Instead, it gives them food to eat, even as the sun warms them, and the sky encompasses them with its beauty.

In the conceit of their hearts, they may take this as evidence that there is no God, or that he approves of their crimes. When in truth, these gifts are signs of God’s mercy and charity.

In this life, God often bestows a greater abundance of created things on sinners than on the just, but only because he reserves for the latter a greater abundance of “the goods of heaven.”

As for the just, God sometimes shows mercy to them in a strange way: by permitting “the persecutions the world’s servants inflict on them, proving in them the virtues of patience and charity.”

When we suffer such persecutions “by offering constant humble prayer,” the virtues fostered within us by grace turn oppression “into glory and praise” for God’s name.

In this way, “whether the wicked will it or not,” they glorify God.

Let us humbly pray that those now praising God in this wicked fashion will have mercy on themselves, and learn to glorify their loving Father in a more just and profitable manner.

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