Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Christmas Novena--Day 2
Hail, and blessed be the hour and moment
At which the Son of God was born
Of a most pure Virgin
At a stable at midnight in Bethlehem
In the piercing cold
At that hour vouchsafe, I beseech Thee,
To hear my prayers and grant my desires
(mention request here).
Through Jesus Christ and His most Blessed Mother.
God's Love Revealed In His Being Born An Infant.
When the Son of God became man for our sake, He could have come on earth as an adult man from the first moment of of His human existence, as Adam did when he was created. But since the sight of little children draws us with an especial attraction to love them, Jesus chose to make His first appearance on earth as a little infant, and indeed as the poorest and most pitiful infant that was ever born. "God wished to be born as a little babe," wrote Saint Peter Chrysologus, "in order that He might teach us to love and not to fear Him." The prophet Isaias had long before foretold that the Son of God was to be born as an infant and thus give Himself to us on account of the love He bore us: "A child is born to us, a son is given to us."
My Jesus, supreme and true God! What has drawn Thee from heaven to be born in a cold stable, if not the love which Thou bearest us men? What has allured Thee from the bosom of Thy Father, to place Thee in a hard manger? What has brought Thee from Thy throne above the stars, to lay Thee down on a little straw? What has led Thee from the midst of the nine choirs of angels, to set Thee between two animals? Thou, who inflamest the seraphim with holy fire, art now shivering with cold in this stable! Thou, who settest the stars in the sky in motion, canst not now move unless others carry Thee in their arms! Thou, who givest men and beasts their food, has need now a little milk to sustain Thy life! Thou, who art the joy of heaven, dost now whimper and cry in suffering! Tell me, who has reduced Thee to such misery? "Love has done it," says Saint Bernard. The love which Thou bearest us men has brought all this on Thee.
O Dearest Infant! Tell me, what hast Thou come on earth to do? Tell me, whom art Thou seeking? Yes, I already know. Thou has come to die for me, in order to save me from hell. Thou hast come to seek me, the lost sheep, so that, instead of fleeing from Thee any more, I may rest in Thy loving arms.
Ah my Jesus, my treasure, my life, my love and my all! Whom will I love, if not Thee? Where can I find a father, a friend, a spouse more loving and lovable than Thou art?
I love Thee, my dear God; I love Thee, my only good. I regret the many years when I have not loved Thee, but rather spurned and offended Thee. Forgive me, O my beloved Redeemer; for I am sorry that I have thus treated Thee, and I regret it with all my heart. Pardon me, and give me the grace never more to withdraw from Thee, but constantly to love Thee in all the years that still lie before me in this life. My love, I give myself entirely to Thee; accept me, and do not reject me as I deserve.
O Mary, thou art my advocate. By thy prayers thou dost obtain whatever thou wilt from thy Son. Pray Him then to forgive me, and to grant me holy perseverance until death. Amen.