GOSPEL (St. John 4:46-53) 
He came again therefore into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain ruler, whose son was sick at Capharnaum. He having heard that Jesus was come from Judea into Galilee, sent to him and prayed him to come down and heal his son: for he was at the point of death. Jesus therefore said to him: "Unless you see signs and wonders, you believe not." The ruler saith to him: Lord, come down before that my son die. Jesus saith to him: "Go thy way. Thy son liveth." The man believed the word which Jesus said to him and went his way. And as he was going down, his servants met him: and they brought word, saying, that his son lived. He asked therefore of them the hour wherein he grew better. And they said to him: "Yesterday at the seventh hour, the fever left him." The father therefore knew that it was at the same hour that Jesus said to him: "Thy son liveth." And himself believed, and his whole house.


That this king had So great a care of his Sonnes health as to try all means, before he came to Christ; that he came to Christ in his own person which kings use not to do that he came to Christ in whom he did not believe, but only to satisfy his solicitous love, that he might have to say to him- selfe, he had tried all means, euen that which he thought to little purpose; that he was so importunate with Christ to come to his house,that he spake to him somewhat imperiouſly, to make him come the ſooner for his greatness, and the like: all this diligence and care of this King for his ſonnes corporal health, doth vpbaid, and condemn us of our little diligence and care of our spiritual health, which is infinitely more to be regarded then our corporal. 

It is a wonder to see, that to obtain corporal health, or other corporal commodities, we think not much of any diligence, labour, or cost; for spiritual we think every little diligence  labour great, and almost unsupportable. 

If there were a Thiſtian should come to a City or town, and set up his billes that he could cure all ina- ner of diseases (as sometimes they do for one or two diseases, and great resorte unto them J what resorte would there be unto him farre and night what paines would they take to come? what cost would they spare? Our Blessed Saviour Christ the true Physician of our soule, setteth up his billes, with proclamation throughout all the world: “All yet that labour and Matt 11: are loaden come unto me, & I will refresh you, take up my yoke and ye shall find ease for your ſouler, excepting no person, nor no disease. 

It is a strange speech and seemeth to imply a contradiction, that if a man be loaded already, and do labour & sweat under one yoke or burden, he shall find ease & rest by taking up another: but we must note the ease and rest here expressed, is not of our bodies, but of our soules, so are the words (& yet shall find ease for your soules;) and the yoke here meant is the keeping of the commandeméts of God.

Which yoke it it be ſyned with the love of God, and prayer (as they use to ſyne the yokes of oxen with cloth, or some such things, or to put some soft thing upon the shoulders of them that bear great burthens to make them easy, it will make not only the labour in keeping the commandments, but all other labourers and afflićtions that God laid upon our shoulders, light, and easy; for as S. Bernard sayth, in that thing which we love, there is no labour º: : and if there be, the very labour and paine is lowed.

The wheels of a Cart, or Wayne heavy laden, and charing, or making a noise, as if they complained, and murmured at the weight of their burthen, if they be greaſed, or anointed with some other ointment, they will go more eaſily away, and chare no more, as if they were cased of their burthen: The love of God is such an oyle, or ointment to our soul, in bearing the yoke of the Commandements, or other difficulties and afflićtions with patience, and sometimes with ioy. 

As for prayer, and Meditation joined there with, it is a refeótion or refreshing of our soul, it is the food and strength thereof, that as a man wearied and exhauſted or spent with trauaile a foot, that he can go no further, having taken some good, is strengthened, and refreshed again, and goeth forward justily in his journey (and therefore to take food is called a refection or making us able and fresh again) so is prayer and meditation to our soui, and therefore priests after saying their Service, or Office of prayer, ſay a little - Psalme or ſome ſuch thing, to give God thanks for that spiritual refeótion , as we vſe to give God thanks after our corporal refečtion. 

Nay these two, the loue of God, & prayer joined together, and as it were lyning the y cKe of the commandments of God , doe not only refresh the soul, but oftentimes euen redound to the body, giving an extraordinary strength, and ability to our body and lim mcs, in so much that we cannot contain ourselves from skipping , dancing, clapping our hands, & the like: and as for our tongue it will make it goe so gly b and nymble in prayer and pray singes of God, as if it were anointed with oyle. 

Nay, which is more, as a man that taſteth any ſweet or Pleaſure food, is drawn on by tating one byt, to eat ano- #. and another, and ſoforth: So he that hath once taſted the ſweetnes of the yoke or intº ©

after Pentecoſ’. 1 105 of the commandements, if it be lyned with the loue of God,and prayer , is draw en on by the ſweetnes he feeleth in one la- bour or paine, to deſire ano- ther,and another, and ſo forth: If not ſo, yet at leaſt to loue the labour thereof, in regard of the quict of conſcience that is got- ten in this life, and the eucrla- ſting reſt in the next; being like wnto him of whom the Scri- pture ſay th; that he ſeeing reſt or eaſt to be good.ſt t hiſ shoulders to Geneſ, labour, that is to ſay, to get caſe ºv. 14. or rºſt by labour, as peace is gotten by warre. A little child goeth more caſily in fowle way then in faire, for in faire way his nurſe letteth him goe a foote, wherein he laboureth & takcth paines; in fowle way ſhe taketh him vp and carrieth him in her armes,and he feeleth no labour or paine at all. In our im, Fry- ſonments, or great ſufferings for our Religion we oftentimes rtioyce, & take great comfort, - 25

1 c6 The XX. Sonday as there is great cauſe, & why? bc.cauſe we are carryed in the armies of a Perſuaſion that we ſuffer for God: in other croſſes and afflićtions, though very ſmall, we labour much, and are much troubled and diſconsen- ted Ail crotics and afflictions we ſuffer patiently rather then to oftend God with impatience and reſiſting his holy will, is to ſuffer for God,and with Chriſt, as well as the other, and there- fore let vs haue patience and re- ioyce thercin alſo, as well as in the other.


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