MEDITATIONS FOR EVERY DAY OF ADVENT – SIXTEENTH DAY

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                     MEDITATION XVI

                     THIRD MONDAY

     Jesus is the Fountain of Grace

Haurietis aquas in gaudio de fontibtis Salvatoris.

You shall draw waters with joy out of the Saviour’s fountains. Isa. 12: 3

Consider the four fountains of grace that we have in Jesus Christ, as contemplated by St. Bernard. The first is that of mercy, in which we can wash ourselves from all the filthiness of our sins. This fountain was formed for us by our Redeemer with his tears and his blood: He loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood.

     The second fountain is that of peace and consolation in our tribulations: Call upon me (saith Jesus Christ) the day of trouble, and I will console thee. He that thirsteth, let him come to me. He that thirsteth for true consolations even in this world, let him come to me, for I will satisfy him. He that once tastes the water of my love will forever disdain all the delights of the world: But he that shall drink of the water that I will give, him shall not thirst forever. And thoroughly contented will he be when he shall enter into the kingdom of the blessed, for the water of my grace shall raise him from earth to heaven. It will become in him a fountain of water springing up into life everlasting. The peace which God gives to the souls that love him is not the peace that the world promises from sensual pleasures, which leave in the soul more bitterness than peace; the peace which God bestows exceeds all the pleasures of the senses: Peace which surpasseth all understanding. Blessed are those who long for this divine fountain. Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice.    

The third fountain is that of devotion. Oh, how devout and ready to execute the divine will, and increasing every day in virtue, is he who constantly meditates on all that Jesus Christ has done for our sake! He will be like the tree planted by a stream of water: He shall be like a tree that is planted near the running waters.

The fourth fountain is that of love: In my meditation a fire shall flame out. It is impossible to meditate on the sufferings and ignominy borne by Jesus Christ for the love of us, and not to feel inflamed by that blessed fire which he came upon earth to enkindle. How true it is, then, that he who avails himself of these blessed fountains of Jesus Christ will always draw from them waters of joy and of salvation! You shall draw waters with joy out of the Saviour’s fountains.

Vision of St Bernard with Sts. Benedict and John the Evangelist, 1504 - Fra Bartolomeo

Vision of St Bernard with Sts. Benedict and John the Evangelist, 1504 – Fra Bartolomeo

              Affections and Prayers

O my sweet and dearest Saviour, how much do I not owe Thee! What an obligation hast Thou put upon me of loving Thee, since Thou hast done for me what no son would have done for his father, and no servant for his master! If Thou, therefore, hast loved me above every one else, it is only just that I should love Thee above all others. I could wish to die with sorrow at the thought that Thou hast suffered so much for me, and that Thou didst accept for my sake the most painful and ignominious death that it is possible for a man to endure; and yet I have so often despised Thy friendship. How many times hast Thou forgiven me, and I have despised Thee afresh? But Thy merits are my hope. I now esteem Thy grace above all the kingdoms of the world. I love Thee, and for Thy love I accept every sorrow, every kind of death. And if I am not worthy to die for Thy glory by the hand of executioners, I accept at least willingly that death which Thou hast allotted to me; and I accept it in the manner and at the time that Thou shalt choose. My dear Mother Mary, obtain for me the grace always to live and to die loving Jesus.

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