Should it happen sometimes, my daughter, that you have no taste
for or consolation in your meditation, I entreat you not to be
troubled, but seek relief in vocal prayer, bemoan yourself to our
Lord, confess your unworthiness, implore His Aid, kiss His Image,
if it be beside you, and say in the words of Jacob, "I will not
let Thee go, except Thou bless me;" or with the Canaanitish woman,
"Yes, Lord, I am as a dog before Thee, but the dogs eat of the
crumbs which fall from their master's table."
Or you can take a book, and read attentively till such time as
your mind is calmed and quickened; or sometimes you may find help
from external actions, such as prostrating yourself folding your
hands upon your breast, kissing your Crucifix,--that is, supposing
you are alone.
But if, after all this, you are still unrelieved, do not be
disturbed at your dryness, however great it be, but continue
striving after a devout attitude in God's Sight. What numbers of
courtiers appear a hundred times at court without any hope of a
word from their king, but merely to pay their homage and be seen
of him. Just so, my daughter, we ought to enter upon mental prayer
purely to fulfil our duty and testify our loyalty.
If it pleases God's Divine Majesty to speak to us, and
discourse in our hearts by His Holy Inspirations and inward
consolations, it is doubtless a great honour, and very sweet to
our soul; but if He does not vouchsafe such favours, but makes as
though He saw us not,--as though we were not in His
Presence,--nevertheless we must not quit it, but on the contrary
we must remain calmly and devoutly before Him, and He is certain
to accept our patient waiting, and give heed to our assiduity and
perseverance; so that another time He will impart to us His
consolations, and let us taste all the sweetness of holy
But even were it not so, let us, my child, be satisfied with
the privilege of being in His Presence and seen of Him.