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A wonderful parable...

Today as I went to mass I came across this parable by Fr. John Tauler, who was an influential Domincan priest and preacher of 14th century. I was deeply moved by its profound message of divine trust.  Read carefully and meditate upon these words,

"Going to the church door, the Master met a beggar there.  He was in a miserable plight, his feet covered with mud and all his tattered clothes not worth three pennies.  The Master said: "Good day, my friend." The beggar: "I never remember to have had a bad day my whole life long." The Master: "May God grant you prosperity." The beggar: " I never have known adversity." The Master: "Well then, may God make thee happy." The beggar : "I have never been unhappy." The Master: "At any rate, may God save you.  And I beg you to speak more plainly to me, for I do not catch your meaning." The beggar: " You did bid me good day and I answered that I have never had a bad one.  In fact, when I am hungry, I praise God: when I am cold, or it hails, or snows, or rains, if the air is clear or foggy, I praise God.  If I am favored by men or despised, I praise him equally. And all this is why I have never known a bad day.  You did wish me prosperity, and I answered that I have never known adversity, for I have learned to live with God, and I am certain that all that he does can be nothing but good.  Therefore all that happens to me is pleasing, or the contrary-sweet or bitter-I receive from him as being very good for me.  Thus I have never been in adversity.  You have wished me happiness, and I answered that I have never been unhappy, for I resolved to fix my affections only on the divine will.  Hence it comes that I desire only what God desires!"  The Master: "But what would you say if God would will to cast you into hell?" The beggar: "God cast me into hell? If he did it, I would embrace him with my two arms.  With the arm of humility I would embrace his sacred humanity, and with the arm of love I would embrace his divinity, and I would thus force him to descend with me into hell. For hell with him would be more happy than heaven without him." 

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