The Perils of the Way.
PRAYER BEFORE MEDITATION.
My God, I firmly believe that Thou art here present. I acknowledge that on account of my many sins I am utterly unworthy to appear before Thy sacred countenance. Yet, confiding in Thy infinite goodness and mercy, I venture to address Thee, to call upon Thy holy name, and meditate upon Thy commandments, in order that I may acquire a better knowledge of Thy holy will, and accomplish it with more fidelity. Wherefore enlighten my understanding that I may perceive what I ought to do or leave undone for the promotion of Thy glory and my own salvation; at the same time excite my will, that I may repent with my whole heart of my past sins, and resolve for the future to do all that Thou requirest of me. Grant me above all to know Jesus, my divine Teacher and Guide, more clearly, that I may love Him more dearly, and consequently labor, struggle and suffer with greater generosity and self-sacrifice in imitation of His example. Holy Mary, Mother of God and my Mother, show Jesus to me now, and let me study thy divine Son to the salvation of my soul. Holy Guardian Angel, keep far from me all distracting thoughts; my patron saint, come to my assistance. Amen.
The Perils of the Way.
1. Out into the darkness of the night went Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Can these homeless wanderers really be the three whose value in the eyes of Heaven made all the rest of the world insignificant as a grain of sand compared with a continent? Yes, this is God’s way of treating those whom He loves best. Herod, in his luxurious palace, is feasting and revelling in luxury and ease: Jesus, Mary, and Joseph are outcasts from their home, shivering in the cold and stormy night. How foolish, then, to desire ease and comfort, or to regret the hardships and disagreeables that befall me!
2. Whither were they going? To Egypt, along an unknown road to a distant and idolatrous country; not knowing the way, not knowing how long they should find subsistence from day to day. What was the trial of Abraham compared with this? He went forth with an escort of servants and camels, and with tents and a store of good things for the way; the Divine Son of God and His parents, empty-handed and alone. Compassionate the Holy Family in their sufferings by the way.
3. What were those sufferings? Often they knew not where to lay their heads, and had to sleep under the starry sky. Often they had to beg their bread. Sometimes they were in danger from the rough banditti who infested the road. Sometimes the wild beasts howled around them. This is a model of the life of the Christian: sometimes deprived of all spiritual sustenance and of all human consolation; sometimes fiercely attacked by men, sometimes by evil passions and the rage of Satan; yet always safe under the watchful care of God.
PRAYER AFTER MEDITATION.
My God, I give Thee heartfelt thanks for all the graces and all the light Thou hast conferred on me during this meditation. Pardon me all the negligence and the distractions of which I have been guilty, and give me strength to carry out the resolutions that I have made. Fortify me, that from henceforth I may diligently practise this virtue . . . avoid this fault . . . perform this action . . . to Thy honor. Help me to do this, sweet Virgin Mary; and if I ever forget my good resolutions, I entreat my Angel Guardian to recall them to my memory. Amen.
Prayer in honor of the Most Holy Name
O sweet Name of Jesus, holy above all names in heaven and on earth, and to which every knee, both of men and of angels in heaven, on earth and in hell bends. You are the the way of the just, the glory of the saints, the hope of those in need, the balm of the sick, the love of the devout and the consolation of those that suffer.
O, Jesus be to me a help and a protector so that your Name may be blessed for all times. – Thomas A. Kempis
Prayer of Reparation in Praise of the Holy Name of God entitled:
“The Golden Arrow”
May the most holy, most sacred, most adorable, most incomprehensible and unutterable Name of God be always praised, blessed, loved, adored and glorified in heaven on earth and under the earth, by all the creatures of God, and by the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ in the most Holy Sacrament of the altar. Amen.
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P.S. 17th day for anyone praying Total Consecration by St. Louis de Montfort that ends February 2nd!