Friday, March 29, 2013

The Patience of Jesus

Nothing animates us so much to love of enemies as grateful consideration of the Lord's admirable patience. By it, the fairest of all men offered his beautiful face to the ungodly to be spit upon. By it, he subjected to the veil of the iniquitous the eyes whose glance governs all creation. By it, he bared his back to scourges. By it, he bowed beneath the sharpness of thorns the head before which principalities and powers tremble. By it, he delivered himself up to insults and outrage. By it, finally, he patiently endured the cross, the nails, the lance, the gall, the vinegar, all that while remaining mild, meek and calm. Oh human pride, Oh proud impatience consider what he bore. Who is there whose wrath would not be cooled at this marvelous sight?

 Crucifix of Fra Innocenzo da Palermo, 1637, Assisi, San Damiano.
 Lines from the Cistercian Father, Aered of Rievaulx in The Mirror of Charity, III.5.