Instead of remaining at the level of beating himself for his failings, Eugene sees them in the context of a wider picture. He is a missionary and needs to evaluate himself in the light of giving his life for God and for others. It is his oblation that must be the driving force of his life.

But I cannot cast off the mental attitude, less again the feeling of my heart, that, as my desire is to win the glory of God and the salvation of the souls he ransomed with his blood, by every means in my power, should it cost me my life, I cannot believe that this good Master will not grant me some consideration especially when I consider that my faults arise precisely from the fact that I am busy, seemingly by his will, with the works of his glory and the salvation of my neighbour.
Is all this an illusion? Rashness? I have no idea. I am writing what comes to my mind, without show or affectation, but with the will to work with all my strength to correct myself and do better in future. God in his goodness knows that I need this trust to act; this it would seem is why he gives it to me.

Retreat Notes, July-August 1816, O.W. XV n 139


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