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A Meditation On The Incarnation Of Christ, Sermons On The Life And
Passion Of Our Lord And Of Hearing And Speaking Good Words. -Thomas A Kempis

HAVE you seen Him whom my soul loveth? I speak to you, O holy angels: tell me what you know of my Jesus. Where is the Child that is born to us? Show me Him Whom my soul loveth. But if you will not show me: tell me at least by those whom you shall deem meet. I speak to you, O shepherds: tell me what you know of my Jesus. Where is the child that is born to us? What did the angel announce to you? “I bring you tidings,” he said, “of great joy: for this day is born to you a Saviour, Who is Christ the Lord in the city of David.” And what sign did he give you? “Ye shall find the Infant wrapped in swaddling clothes,” he said: “and laid in a manger.” And what did the holy angels sing? “Glory to God in the highest,” they sang: and they added, “on earth peace to men of good will.” And after this what did you do? “At once with haste and joy we went over to Bethlehem: and we found Jesus lying in a manger.” O me, what do I hear: how sweet and pleasant is this which I learn. It is enough for me at present. I will go and see this child: before I die. But wait a little while: I will go with you: and we shall all be received together. And do you, all ye angels of God, hasten: and lead me by a quick route to the manger of Christ. Open to me, Joseph and Mary; open the door, my dear ones: that entering His tent, I may adore His sacred feet. All the kings of the earth desired to see Solomon: and to hear his wisdom. And behold here a greater than Solomon. Permit me then to enter: that I may kiss His footstool. For it is He of Whom the prophets foretold; Whom the angels announced: Whom the shepherds visited. It is He Whom I seek, Whom I love: Whom I long to see.

What fearest, my soul? Call, seek, knock: until the door be opened to thee. “Go over to the place of the wonderful tabernacle: even to the house of God.” Approach with trust, and draw nigh to the new-born Child WITH LOVE: for He shall not cast thee off, nor drive thee away: but freely He shall admit thee, and show thee His grace. Fear not the face of Him that wails in the manger: He is lamenting thy sins, not His own pains. He comes to seek thee: not to destroy. He comes to save thee: not to judge. He comes to loose thee: not to bind. He comes to suffer evils: not to inflict. He desires to deliver thee: not to imprison. What fearest thou before the poor little Child? He is God, thou sayest: and in His hand power and empire. It is true. Nevertheless He does not come now to judge: but to forgive sins. He offers mercy: He withholds vengeance. He tenders grace: He puts aside anger. He shows love: He casts out fear. HE DESIRES TO BE LOVED: RATHER THAN TO BE FEARED. Say therefore, “Thou art my Saviour and my Redeemer: O Lord my God, Thou art well come this day. O desirable and most lovable Child: show me Thy mercy: who am not yet fit to see Thy glory. Stretch out to me Thy right hand: who am not able to endure Thy justice. For Thy boundless love’s sake, blot out all my iniquity. I am sick and covered with sores, heal my soul. I am blind and naked: enlighten my darkness: and clothe me with true virtue. I AM WITHERED AND CRIPPLED: WATER MY FACE WITH TEARS, AND DIRECT ALL MY STEPS IN THY PATHS. My heart speaks to Thee, my face seeks Thee; I long to see Thy countenance, Lord Jesus: and with the angels and shepherds devoutly to visit Thee. For Thou art the salvation of my wee and my God: Whom truly I ought to love above all things. None is more beautiful than Thou, none more lovable: none more noble than Thou, none more holy than Thou. Thou art wiser than all the wise: richer than all, greater than all. Thine are the heavens, and Thine is the earth: the sea and all things that are in them. Thine is the day, and Thine is the night, the summer and the spring were formed by Thee; Thou hast ordered all things in certain seasons: Who didst will to be born in the dark night and the winter cold.”

O wondrous and ineffable love of God and my Lord Jesus Christ, wailing in the manger: Whom all the angels in Heaven praise and worship. O what great thanks am I bound to render to the most loving Lord my Saviour and my Redeemer, born for my salvation: Who refused not to be sheltered like a poor miserable man in a stable in the company of beasts. Certainly I have no worthy praise-offering: but nevertheless I FREELY PRESENT THEE A GOOD WILL IN SIGN OF LOVE AND GRATITUDE. What more? Shall I sing with the holy angels: or weep from compassion, thinking on the tears of the wailing infant? Each of these actions gives pleasure, each of these actions affords delight: both to weep with Jesus, and to praise Jesus with the angels. And all this I desire to do to the glory of God; and to humble myself before the eyes of His Majesty: Who humbled Himself even to the form of a little child.

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