BY THOMAS A KEMPIS
Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur, 1941
30: OF ASKING THE DIVINE ASSISTANCE,
AND OF CONFIDENCE OF RECOVERING GRACE
SON, I am the Lord, Who giveth strength in the day of tribulation. Come
to Me when it is not well with thee.
This is that which most of all hindereth heavenly comfort, that thou
art too slow in betaking thyself to prayer.
For before thou earnestly prayest to Me, thou seekest in the meantime
many comforts, and delightest thyself in outward things.
And hence it comes that all things avail thee little, till thou
consider well that I am He Who delivereth those that trust in Me; nor
is there out of Me any powerful help, nor profitable counsel, nor
But now having recovered thy spirit after the storm, grow thou strong
again, in the light of My mercies; for I am at hand, saith the Lord, to
repair all, not only to the full, but even with abundance and above
2. Is anything difficult to Me? Or shall I be like to one promising and
Where is thy faith? Stand firmly and perseveringly; practice endurance
and manly courage; comfort will come to thee in due season.
Wait for Me, wait; I will come and cure thee.
It is a temptation that troubleth thee, and a vain fear that
What doth the solicitude about future contingencies bring thee, but
only sorrow upon sorrow? Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof.
It is vain and useless to conceive either grief or joy for future
things, which perhaps shall never come to pass.
3. But it is in human nature to be deluded with such imaginations; and
it is the sign of a soul as yet weak to be so easily drawn away by the
suggestions of the enemy.
For he careth not whether it be with things true or false that he
abuseth and deceiveth thee; whether he overthrow thee with the love of
things present or the fear of things to come.
Let not, therefore, thy heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Believe thou in Me, and trust in My mercy.
When thou thinkest I am far from thee, I am often nearest to
When thou judgest that almost all is lost, then oftentimes it is that
thou art in the way of the greatest gain of merit.
All is not lost when anything falls out contrary to what thou wouldst
Thou must not judge according to thy present feeling, nor give thyself
up in such manner to any trouble, whencesoever it comes, nor take it so
as if all hope of deliverance were gone.
4. Think not thyself wholly forsaken, though for a time I have sent
thee some tribulation, or withdrawn from thee thy wished-for
consolation; for this is the way to the kingdom of Heaven.
And without doubt it is more expedient for thee and for the rest of My
servants, that you be exercised in adversity, than that you should have
all things according to your inclination.
I know thy most hidden thoughts, and that it is very expedient for thy
salvation that thou sometimes be left without any savor of sweetness,
lest perchance thou be puffed up with good success, and take
complacency in thyself, imagining thyself to be what thou art not.
What I have given, I have the power to take away, and restore as it
5. When I have given it, it is still Mine; when I withdraw it again, I
take not anything that is thine; for every best gift and perfect gift
If I send thee affliction or any adversity, repine not, neither let thy
heart be cast down.
I can quickly raise thee up again, and turn all thy burden into joy.
Nevertheless, I am just, and greatly to be praised, when I thus deal
6. If thou thinkest rightly, and considerest things in truth, thou
oughtest never to be so much dejected and troubled at adversity.
But thou shouldst rather rejoice and give thanks, yea, account this as
a special subject of joy, that afflicting thee with sorrows I do not
"As the Father hath loved Me, I also
said I to My beloved disciples; whom certainly I did not send to
temporal joys, but to great conflicts; not to honors, but to contempt;
not to idleness, but to labors; not to rest, but to bring forth much
fruit in patience. Remember thou these words, O My son.
I AM the Lord, saith the Almighty, by the mouth of one of His
Prophets, Who giveth strength to souls in the day of trouble, and
delivereth those from danger who put their trust in Me. How consoling,
how encouraging and supporting, are these words to a soul that, in the
time of temptation and adversity, is faithful and constant to what God
requires of it! This is what the Scripture calls to wait for and to
support the Lord.
Believe in Me, says our Blessed Savior, and thy heart shall not be
troubled nor fear. Wherefore, upon occasion of interior or exterior
affliction, we should, in the first place, have recourse to God with
confidence; secondly, we should resign ourselves to His blessed will;
thirdly, we should not neglect any of our spiritual exercises;
fourthly, we should subdue ourselves, restrain and renounce ourselves
in all things, that we may act in concert with God; fifthly, we should
consider it our welfare and our merit to be afflicted, tormented, and,
as it were, annihilated for the honor of God's majesty; sixthly, we
should be content to carry a crucified heart, a heart suffering and
penetrated with bitterness and sorrow, in imitation of our crucified
NO, Lord, I will not give up all as lost when Thou seemest to
withdraw Thyself from me; but, on the contrary, I will believe all
gained when my soul, though sinking under fatigue, and withered with
bitterness, shall resign itself to Thy holy will, and live only in
Thee, saying with the Prophet: "I
commit to Thee all my strength, for my soul is in Thy hands, and Thy
mercy supports and encourages my heart to profit by the sense of my
." Abandon me not, o God, to the disorder of my
passions, but be Thou their master by Thy grace, and keep me always in
the possession of Thy love. Amen.