kingdom of God is within you," says the Lord. (9)
then, to God with all your heart. Forsake this wretched world
and your soul shall find
rest. Learn to despise external things, to devote yourself
to those that are within, and you will see
the kingdom of God come unto you, that kingdom which is peace
and joy in the Holy Spirit, gifts
not given to the impious.
will come to you offering His consolation, if you prepare
a fit dwelling for Him in your
heart, whose beauty and glory, wherein He takes delight,
are all from within. His visits with the
inward man are frequent, His communion sweet and full of
consolation, His peace great, and His
intimacy wonderful indeed.
faithful soul, prepare your heart for this Bridegroom that
He may come and dwell
within you; He Himself says: "If any one love Me, he
will keep My word, and My Father will love
him, and We will come to him, and will make Our abode with
place, then, to Christ, but deny entrance to all others, for
when you have Christ you are
rich and He is sufficient for you. He will provide for you.
He will supply your every want, so that
you need not trust in frail, changeable men. Christ remains
forever, standing firmly with us to the
not place much confidence in weak and mortal man, helpful
and friendly though he be; and
do not grieve too much if he sometimes opposes and contradicts
you. Those who are with us today
may be against us tomorrow, and vice versa, for men change
with the wind. Place all your trust in
God; let Him be your fear and your love. He will answer for
you; He will do what is best for you.
You have here no lasting home. You are a stranger and a pilgrim
wherever you may be, and
you shall have no rest until you are wholly united with Christ.
do you look about here when this is not the place of your
repose? Dwell rather upon
heaven and give but a passing glance to all earthly things.
They all pass away, and you together
with them. Take care, then, that you do not cling to them
lest you be entrapped and perish. Fix your
mind on the Most High, and pray unceasingly to Christ.
you do not know how to meditate on heavenly things, direct
your thoughts to Christ?s passion
and willingly behold His sacred wounds. If you turn devoutly
to the wounds and precious stigmata
of Christ, you will find great comfort in suffering, you
will mind but little the scorn of men, and
you will easily bear their slanderous talk.
Christ was in the world, He was despised by men; in the hour
of need He was forsaken
by acquaintances and left by friends to the depths of scorn.
He was willing to suffer and to be
despised; do you dare to complain of anything? He had enemies
and defamers; do you want everyone
to be your friend, your benefactor? How can your patience
be rewarded if no adversity test it? How
can you be a friend of Christ if you are not willing to suffer
any hardship? Suffer with Christ and
for Christ if you wish to reign with Him.
you but once entered into perfect communion with Jesus or
tasted a little of His ardent
love, you would care nothing at all for your own comfort
or discomfort but would rejoice in the
reproach you suffer; for love of Him makes a man despise
man who is a lover of Jesus and of truth, a truly interior
man who is free from uncontrolled
affections, can turn to God at will and rise above himself
to enjoy spiritual peace.
He who tastes life as it really is, not as men say or think
it is, is indeed wise with the wisdom
of God rather than of men.
who learns to live the interior life and to take little account
of outward things, does not seek
special places or times to perform devout exercises. A spiritual
man quickly recollects himself
because he has never wasted his attention upon externals.
No outside work, no business that cannot
wait stands in his way. He adjusts himself to things as they
happen. He whose disposition is well
ordered cares nothing about the strange, perverse behavior
of others, for a man is upset and distracted
only in proportion as he engrosses himself in externals.
all were well with you, therefore, and if you were purified
from all sin, everything would
tend to your good and be to your profit. But because you
are as yet neither entirely dead to self nor
free from all earthly affection, there is much that often
displeases and disturbs you. Nothing so
mars and defiles the heart of man as impure attachment to
created things. But if you refuse external
consolation, you will be able to contemplate heavenly things
and often to experience interior joy.