Story of a Soul is the spiritual autobiography of St. Thèrése of Liseaux. Beginning with her childhood longing for the ascetic life, St. Thèrése documents the life circumstances that led her to the Carmelite tradition and her subsequent spiritual journey. Much like St. John of the Cross, St. Thèrése describes a period of prolonged darkness over her soul. Her story is one of victory and nearness to Jesus, but her spiritual journey through life was far from easy. Be encouraged by the story of this young saint and learn from her example of simple devotion to Jesus.
“This childish incident was a forecast, so to speak, of my whole life. Later on, when the way of perfection was opened out before me, I realised that in order to become a Saint one must suffer much, always seek the most perfect path, and forget oneself. I also understood that there are many degrees of holiness, that each soul is free to respond to the calls of Our Lord, to do much or little for His Love—in a word, to choose amongst the sacrifices He asks. And then also, as in the days of my childhood, I cried out: ‘My God, I choose everything, I will not be a Saint by halves, I am not afraid of suffering for Thee, I only fear one thing, and that is to do my own will. Accept the offering of my will, for I choose all that Thou willest.’” (Page 25)
“Our Lord made me understand that the only true glory is that which lasts for ever; and that to attain it there is no necessity to do brilliant deeds, but rather to hide from the eyes of others, and even from oneself, so that ‘the left hand knows not what the right hand does.’1 Then, as I reflected that I was born for great things, and sought the means to attain them, it was made known to me interiorly that my personal glory would never reveal itself before the eyes of men, but that it would consist in becoming a Saint.” (Page 55)
“I realised thoroughly that joy is not found in the things which surround us, but lives only in the soul. One could possess it as well in an obscure prison as in the palace of a king.” (Page 101)
“Earth seemed a place of exile, and I dreamed of Heaven.” (Page 32)
Thérèse of Lisieux died at the early age of twenty-four and was canonized in 1914, only seventeen years after her death. She was also a French Carmelite nun and also known as "The Little Flower of Jesus".