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Revelations of St. Bridget

Revelations and Prophecies Imparted to St. Bridget

Book Four

Chapter Sixty-Eight

          In Chapter Sixty-Eight of Book Four of the Prophesies and Revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden, Our Lady returns to alert the bride of the dangers of the wicked fox who the devil replicates in his actions and from which we derive the term, 'clever like a fox' for the devil is far more clever than we give him credit for and we need to be on our guard at all times for looks can deceive and temptations can be the death of a soul if one is not rooted in virtue. In the journey towards being virtuous, all must guard against the wily demon fox lest one be blinded by the the world, the flesh and the devil and turn virtue into vice, which the Blessed Mother warns, can be the fall of many a man who become discouraged that they are not further along. Some will give up, disheartened and that is exactly what the devil wants. Jesus explains that if one does not seek virtue and do all one can to avoid sin, not only will the fox devour them, but they will feel the wrath of God at one's unexpected death.

    The Mother speaks: "The small animal called a fox is very diligent and clever in getting everything it needs. Sometimes it pretends to be asleep or even dead so that the birds lose their caution and perch right on top of it, and the fox can then easily catch and devour the birds so uncautious as to perch there. It watches how the birds fly, and snatches and devours any it sees resting from their fatigue on the ground or under a tree. However, the birds that fly with both their wings confuse and frustrate him in his efforts.

    "This fox represents the devil. He is always following God's friends and especially those who lack his malicious bile and wicked venom. He pretends to be asleep and dead in the sense that he sometimes leaves a person free from more serious temptations so as to deceive and ensnare him unawares more easily in small ones.

    "Sometimes he even makes vice seem like virtue and virtue like vice, in order that a person gets caught and falls into a hole and comes to ruin, unless prudence comes to his aid. An example will help you to understand this.

    "Sometimes mercy can be a vice, namely, when it is practiced merely to please people. Rigorous justice can be injustice, when it is exercised because of greed or impatience. Humility can be pride, when one makes a display of it in order to attract attention. Patience seems to be a virtue but is not in a situation where one would seek revenge if one could, but must endure an offense simply because there is no opportunity for revenge.

    "Sometimes the devil also submits people to trials and tribulations in order to break them through excessive sadness. Sometimes, too, the devil fills people's hearts with anxiety and worry so as to make them become lukewarm in God's service or, when they are careless in small respects, to make them fall in greater ones.

    "It was in this way that the person of whom I am speaking was tricked by the fox. When he reached old age and had everything he wanted, and declared himself to be happy and to wish to go on living, he was then snatched away without the sacraments and without atoning for his life and deeds. Like an ant, he used to gather his stores night and day, though not in the storehouse of the Lord. But, when he had reached the entrance of the anthill where he was bringing his grain, he died and left his work for others. He who does not fruitfully gather in the time of harvest will not have the enjoyment of the corn.

    "Happy are those birds of the Lord that do not sleep beneath the trees of worldly delights but in the trees of heavenly desires. If ever a temptation of that wicked fox, the devil, lays hold of them, they quickly fly away on the wings of humble confession and the hope of heavenly assistance."


    Christ, the Son of God, speaks: "This provost is material for the episcopate. Whoever wants to climb the tree of sweet fruit should be free from every burden, girded and ready for gathering, having a clean vessel in which to put the fruit.

    "Let this man seek eagerly now to decorate his body with virtues. He should supply it with the necessities but not the superfluities of life.

    "He should flee the occasions of incontinence and greed and show himself to be a clean mirror and an example for imperfect men. Otherwise a horrible fall will come upon him, a sudden end by the stroke of My hand."

    All this came to pass.

Revelations and Prophesies Imparted to St. Bridget of Sweden
Book Four: Chapter Sixty-Eight