Spiritual Exercises For Every Day In The Week, For Those Who Communicate Often: Monday + Consider Jesus Christ As Thy Father
Consider Jesus Christ as thy Father, and propose at walking to return to hm, though thou hast so basely deserted him, say with the prodigal son and in the like penitential disposition: I will arise and go to my Father.
Oh! to what a wretched condition do I find myself reduced? I am poor, naked, famished and destitute of help. Why should I tarry longer in so miserable a condition, whilst even the hired servants in my father's house live in plenty? I will go then to my father, I will cast myself at his feet and will implore him to treat me like one of them.
Awake, O fatherly heart! and listen to what thy tender compassion shall speak to thee in favour of this thy unhappy child, who hath so basely abandoned thee: let the sight of his misery move thee to compassion, and to receive him again into thy house.
Be of good courage, O my soul! for how base soever thou hast been, such is thy Father's goodness and mercy that thou hast reason to hope that this day will put an end to all thy miseries; and that forgetting thy past disorders, he will restore thee to favour, and fill thee with the good things with which his house if known to bound.
O the most tender and the most loving of all fathers! thou art then willing to receive this prodigal child who hath so highly displeased thee; to change his afflictions into joy, his poverty into wealth, his misery into happiness, who can sufficiently admire such an excess of bounty?
O how I desire to return to my heavenly Father! All my thoughts, affections, desires and actions shall serve this day as so many steps towards my return to him by means of the zeal and love wherewith I purpose to discharge them.
Not satisfied with receiving me, O merciful Father! thou dst also slay the fatted calf for feasting me. A signal mark this of thy goodness! But clothe me first, I beseech thee, as the prodigal child, with the robe of charity, give me the ring of faith and the shoes of hope, that I may partake worthily of this heavenly food, no other than thy precious body here exhibited in the state of mystical death.
But since thou art, O my soul to partake of this delicious aliment, cast from thee the husks of swine, renounce all sensual pleasures, and maintain the glorious dignity of a child of God by a life led in conformity to thy high rank.
This divine aliment is the bread of children; to be qualified for a participation of it, it is necessary to be a child of the heavenly Father and to lead a pure and holy life. This holy bread is not designed for dogs, nir for slaves, that is, for unclean souls, such as live under the law of sin. Clothe thyself therefore with the spirit and the virtues of the children of God, before thou dost presume t partake of it.
Behold, loving Father! behold here that prodigal child who hath treated thee so unworthily, who left thee against thy will, who squandered away they substance in rioting and debauchery, dishonoured thy holy name by a course of life unworthy of his birth