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Revelations of St. Bridget

Revelations and Prophecies Imparted to St. Bridget

Book Four

Chapter Twelve

          In Book Four, Chapter Twelve of the Prophesies and Revelations of the holy mystic St. Bridget of Sweden, the Blessed Virgin Mary speaks to the daughter about the vicissitudes of God's friends in this world, who are at times spiritually distressed and at other times comforted, and about the meaning of spiritual distress and comfort, and about how God's friends must rejoice and be comforted in their time for the sheep must be lead in the right direction and only through the discipline during these times can they truly realize how valuable the Holy Ghost is in providing spiritual consolation so that they can all the more appreciate the trustworthiness of the Good Shepherd.

    The Blessed Mother speaks: "In this world God's friends must sometimes find themselves spiritually distressed, at other times spiritually comforted. Spiritual consolation means the infusion of the Holy Ghost, contemplating God's great works, admiring His forbearance, and putting all this cheerfully into practice. Spiritual distress is when the mind is involuntarily disturbed by unclean and vexing thoughts, when it suffers anguish over dishonor shown to God and over the loss of souls, when one's heart is forced to occupy itself with worldly concerns for a good reason.

    "God's friends can also at times be comforted with a temporal kind of comfort, such as edifying conversation, decent entertainment, or other activities in which there is nothing demeaning or indecent, as you will understand from the following comparison.

    "If a fist were always held tightly closed, then either the muscles would be strained or the hand would grow weak. It is similar in spiritual matters. If the soul always remained in contemplation, then she would either forget herself and perish through pride, or else her crown of glory would be lessened. The reason why God's friends are at times comforted by the infusion of the Holy Spirit and are at other times, with God's permission, distressed is that their distress tears up the roots of sin and firmly plants the fruit of righteousness.

    "But God, Who sees hearts and understands all things, moderates the temptations of His friends in such a way that the temptations lead to their progress, for He does everything and allows everything to happen with due weight and measure. Since you have been called in God's Spirit, do not worry about God's forbearance, for it is written that no one comes to God unless the Father draws him.

    "A shepherd uses a bunch of flowers to draw his sheep and entice them into the barn, and carefully locks the barn. The sheep, then, cannot get out but run around in circles because the barn is secured by means of walls, a high roof, and locked gates. In this way they get so used to eating hay that they become tame enough to eat hay out of the hand of the shepherd.

    "This very thing has been done with you. That which before seemed unbearable and difficult to you has now become so easy that now nothing delights you so much as God." Christ's words to the bride as to which tears are acceptable to God and which are not, and about what kind of alms should be requested or given to the poor for the sake of departed souls, and about Christ's advice and exhortation to the bride.

Revelations and Prophesies Imparted to St. Bridget of Sweden
Book Four: Chapter Twelve