you say you cannot believe that temptations against the faith and the Church come from God. but whoever told you that they did? He can send darkness, helplessness, can keep you tied to your perch, can lead you into dereliction, and strip you of all strength, can upset your spiritual digestion and make your inner mouth taste bitter so that the sweetest wine in the world turns to gall; but suggestions of blasphemy, infidelity, unbelief – oh, no, these can never come from our merciful God: He is too pure to conceive such ideas.
shall i tell you what part God plays in this? He allows the evil maker of lies to come and offer us these forgeries for sale, so that by despising them we may prove our affection for divine things. and are we anxious about it and change our attitude? o no, never, never! it is the devil who is roaming all round our soul, spreading confusion and prying to see whether he cannot find some door open somewhere. that is what he did to job, to saint anthony, saint catherine of siena, and an infinite number of good souls that i know, and to my own soul which is good for nothing and which i do not know.
well now, are we to be put out by this? let him kick his heels outside, and keep all the doors and windows tightly shut: he will get tired of it in the end, and if he does not, God will make his raise the siege. remember what i think i told you once before: it is a good sign that he should be making so much noise and raising such a tempest in this matter of your will, for it is a sign that he has not got in.
saint francis de sales