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Treatise on the Love of God
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CHAPTER V.

A VERY SWEET EXAMPLE ON THIS SUBJECT.

God is innocent to the innocent,592592Ps. xvii. 26. good to the good, cordial to the cordial, tender towards the tender, and his love often makes him do acts of a sacred and holy fondness (mignardise) towards souls who, out of an amorous purity and simplicity, make themselves as little children with him.

Upon a day S. Frances was reciting Our Lady's Office, and, as it commonly happens that if there is but one affair in the whole day, it presses most at time of prayer, this holy lady was called away by her husband for some household matter, and four sundry times thinking to take up again the thread of her Office, she was called from it again, and constrained to interrupt the same verse, till this blessed affair, for which they had so importunately interrupted her prayer, being finished at last, when she returned to her Office she found the verse, so often left by obedience and so often recommenced by devotion, all written in fair golden letters, which her devout companion, Madam Vannocia swore she saw the dear Angel-Guardian of the Saint writing, as S. Paul afterwards revealed to the Saint herself.

What sweetness, Theotimus, of this heavenly spouse towards this sweet and faithful lover! But meantime you see that necessary employments, according to each one's vocation, do not diminish Divine love, but increase it, and gild, as it were, the work of devotion. The nightingale loves her melody no less when she makes her pauses than when she sings; the devout heart loves love no less when she turns to exterior necessities than when she prays: her silence and her speech, her action and her contemplation, her employment and her rest, equally sing in her the hymn of her love.

 


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