Sanctification in Daily Work
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Living a Holy Life in Today’s World

I was asked today about how to live a holy life in today’s world. The implication being that it is difficult to do in a society that seems bent on removing religion from our everyday life and being focused on wealth and possessions while finding someone else to blame for everything without accepting personal responsibility.

Yes it does seem difficult. It makes me think of a saying you see printed along with an image of Jesus that goes, “I never said it would be easy. I only said it would be worth it.” I’m not sure where that phrase comes from but I have thought of it often when trying to do something I know is right even when it isn’t easy. Like going to daily Mass when I’m traveling and in a city that I’ve never been to before and have a tight schedule due to the work that I’m doing. It is often not easy to do but after Mass I can truly say it was worth the effort!

As a cooperator of Opus Dei one of the key elements that drew me to it to start with is centered in this concept of “Sanctification in Daily Work.” To sanctify is to make holy and that’s what we are called to do as lay people in “the middle of the world.” So to me, the idea of living a holy life involves doing what is right and I look to my faith to teach me that.

I also think it’s necessary to work at becoming or being holy in the world today and fortunately our faith provides us with a number of tools to help us. Here are the things that I think are necessary:

  • Daily prayer done at specific times (first thing in morning and last at night). This can consist of the Rosary, morning offering, thanks before and after meals, etc.
  • A short reading from scripture, especially the New Testament.
  • A few minutes of mental prayer.
  • Daily Mass if possible.
  • A visit to Jesus in the Tabernacle.
  • Frequent confession.
  • Daily spiritual reading.

St. Josemaria says this in his book Friends of God:

You should not let them become rigid rules, or water?tight compartments. They should be flexible, to help you on your journey you who live in the middle of the world, with a life of hard professional work and social ties and obligations which you should not neglect, because in them your conversation with God still continues. Your plan of life ought to be like a rubber glove which fits the hand perfectly.

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