“And they shall go in and go out, and find pasture.”
One great secret for executing the good purposes inspired by God during this month, is to learn to enter into the sacred heart, to go forth from the sacred heart, and enter again into the sacred heart. First, enter into the sacred heart by recollection and prayer; make great account always of this holy exercise; never lose sight of Jesus. Remember how St Teresa recommends it. Second, go forth from the sacred heart to labour for Jesus Christ, as the seraphim go out from paradise without leaving it; preserve the desire, at least, of returning to it quickly, and remain in the presence of Jesus; carry him with you to lodge him in the hearts of those with whom you converse. Go forth from Jesus, like the ray from the sun, and like Jesus from his father; that is, without ceasing to be united to him. Third, re-enter the heart of Jesus as soon as possible; ﬁrst. by frequent elevations of mind and heart, amid your many occupations; secondly, by penance, and examen, recalling your heart from its wanderings; place your head under the cross, and if you have sinned by pride, say, Lord, trample on this proud head: if by impatience, say, Lord, why have I not the lance which pierced your heart, therewith to pierce mine, and relieve it from all its bitterness? If by any other fault, say, I know, Lord, you are my judge, and I wish, therefore, to anticipate your judgment by punishing myself; for I know you love me too well to punish me twice. Behold the means of entering, of going forth, and of re-entering the sacred heart, and thus remaining constantly united to it, If you still hesitate, hear the lesson which our Lord him self gave to a holy soul. He appeared to her holding a golden circle, in the midst of which was a heart, fastened on all sides with chains of gold, and against which several persons bent arrows; some shot so as that the arrows went but half way; others hit the circle, and caused some sparks to be emitted therefrom; but the third class struck the heart, penetrated it thoroughly, and caused many drops of blood and rays of light to spring on them. Being seized with astonishment, this soul begged the solution of this mystery, and it was explained to her, that the golden circle represented the divine mercy ‘ which comprehends in it, as its masterpiece, the loving heart of Jesus, with the inﬁnite merits of his life and death; and that those who shot the arrows, ﬁgured three sorts of persons who give themselves particularly to the practice of virtue. ‘That the ﬁrst, whose darts were ineffectual, indicated those who perform their actions through custom. The second, those who, with good intentions, intermingle their own selﬁsh motives. The third, those who, rising superior to all, act purely for the glory of God, and thereby go direct to the sacred heart, and transpiercing it, cause to ﬂow on themselves abundantly the fruits of the passion of the Savior, which is applied to them by great lights and holy inspirations. Let ‘our actions, like those of these last, go straight to the sacred heart. Still more, establish therein your dwelling; but, not satisﬁed to dwell there alone, draw thither all that you are able.