Monday, April 21, 2008

What return shall I make to Him who created me?

Meditation of the Day

Loving Jesus, Keeping His Word

Jesus Christ, my dear and gracious Lord,
You have shown a love greater than that of any man
And which no one can equal,
For you in no way deserved to die,
Yet you laid down your dear life
For those who served you and sinned against you.
You prayed for those who were killing you
That you might make them just men and your brothers
And restore them to your merciful Father and to yourself.
Lord, who showed such love to your enemies,
You have also enjoined the same love upon your friends.

My good Lord,
With what affection should I think of your love
Which is beyond measure?
What return shall I make for your boundless gifts?
For your loving kindness is beyond all telling,
The greatness of your gift surpasses all return.
Then what return shall I make
To him who created me and re-created me?
To him who has had mercy on me and redeemed me?
O God, you are my God,
My goods are nothing unto you,
For the whole world is yours and all that is in it.

Then what shall I, a beggar and poor,
A creeping thing of dust,
What return can I make to my God,
Except to obey his commandments, that we love one another…

You know, Lord, that I prize this love which you command,
I hold this love dear, and long for this charity.
This I ask, this I seek.
For this your poor man, your beggar,
Beats and clamors at the gate of your mercy.
And now, insofar as I have already received
The sweet alms you freely give,
I love all men, in you and for your sake
Though not so much as I ought or as I desire.
I pray your mercy upon all men,
Yet there are many whom I hold more dear
Since your love has impressed them upon my heart
With a closer and more intimate love,
So that I desire their love more eagerly -
I would pray more ardently for these –

Saint Anselm (+ 1109) was an abbot, bishop, philosopher, and theologian.

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