C H R I S T. My son, I came down from Heaven for your salvation. (John 3:17) I took upon Myself your sorrows, not because I must, but out of pure love, that you might learn patience, and bear without complaint all the troubles of this world. From the hour of My Birth until My Death on the Cross, I had always to endure sorrow. (Isa. 53:3) I suffered great lack of worldly goods; many accusations were leveled against Me. I bore all disgrace and insults with meekness. In return for blessings I received ingratitude; for miracles, blasphemies; for My teaching, reproofs.
THE DISCIPLE. Lord, because You were patient in Your life, in this respect especially fulfilling the command of Your Father, it is fitting that I, a wretched sinner, should bear myself patiently in accordance with Your will, and that, for the salvation of my soul, I should bear the burden of this corruptible life so long as You shall will. For though this present life is hard, yet by Your grace it is made full of merit; and by Your example and the lives of Your Saints it is rendered easier and happier for the weak. Its consolations are richer than under the old Law, when the gates of Heaven were shut, and the way thither dark, so that few cared to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. And even those who in former days were righteous and to be saved could not enter the Kingdom of Heaven until Your Passion and the Atonement of Your sacred Death.
What boundless gratitude is Your due, for revealing to me and to all faithful people the true and holy way to Your eternal Kingdom! Your life is our Way, and by holy patience we will journey onwards to You, who are our crown and consummation. If You, Lord, had not gone before us and showed the way, who could follow? How many would have stayed behind and far distant had they not Your glorious example for their guide? Even now we are cold and careless, although we have heard Your teaching and mighty acts. What would happen to us had we not Your light as our guide? (John 8:12; 12:46)
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