Julian’s 15th Showing

The fifteenth Revelation is as it shewid etc. The absense of God in this lif is our ful gret peyne, besyde other travel, but we shal sodenly be taken fro all peyne, having Jesus to our Moder; and our patient abyding is gretly plesyng to God. And God wil we take our disese lightly, for love, thinkand us alwey at the poynte to be delivirid.

Sixty-fourth chapter.

Before this time I had a great longing,
and a desire to be freed by God’s gift
from this world and from this life;  
for I often saw the woe that is here,
and the well-being and bliss that is there.

If there were no pain in this life, but our Lord was absent,
I thought that would be more than I might bear.
I mourned and longed for release,
and in my own wretchedness, my sloth and weakness,
despaired of my life and its trials.

And to all this our courteous Lord answered,
giving comfort and patience, saying,
Suddenly you shall be taken from all your pain, from all your sickness, distress and woe. You shall come up above, and have me for your reward and be filled with love and bliss, with no manner of pain, nothing to dislike nor want of will, but unending joy and bliss forever. What should it than aggrieve you to suffer a while since it is my will and my worship?

In these words, Suddenly you shall be taken,
I saw God rewards our patience,
our abiding His will and time,
and that our patience extends throughout this life,
for not knowing our own time of passing
is a great profit; if we knew our time
we could have no patience until then.

God wills, while the soul is in the body,
that it always feels about to be taken.
For all this life and languor we have here
is but a point;
when we are taken suddenly from pain to bliss,
then pain shall be set at naught.

Then I saw a body lying on the earth,
heavy and ugly, without shape and form,
like a heaving heap of stinking mire;
suddenly out of this body sprang a full fair creature,
a little child, fully shaped and formed,
swift and lively, whiter than a lily,
which glided swiftly up to Heaven.

The swollen body showed our wretched mortal flesh,
and the little child the soul’s clean purity;
none of the child’s beauty was in the body,
and none of the body’s foulness in the child

It is more blissful for man to be taken from pain,
than pain to be taken from man;
for pain taken from us may come again.
So it is sovereign comfort,
a blissful sight to a loving soul,
if we shall be taken from pain.

I saw our Lord’s marvellous compassion for our woe,
His courteous promise of clean release,
comforting our passing with these words:
… you shall come up above, and you shall have me as your reward, and you shall be filled with joy and bliss.

God wills us to hold this blissful thought
as often as we may, and for as long
as time holds us here in His grace.
For it is a blessed contemplation
for the soul led by God,
greatly to His worship as long as it lasts.

Then we fall again,
to our heaviness, our spiritual blindness,
our spiritual and bodily pains in our frailty.
Yet God has not forgotten us,
which He meant in these words said for comfort:
And you shall never more have pain, no manner of sickness, no manner of displeasure, nor failure of desire but forever joy and bliss without end. Why then should you grieve to suffer a while, as it is my will and in my worship?

God’s will is that we accept His bidding
and His comforting, both as fully
and as strongly as is possible for us.
And that we take our abiding here,
and our discomforts, as lightly as we can,
setting them at naught.

For the more lightly we take them,
the less price we set on them for love,
the less pain shall we have in feeling them,
and the more thanks and reward we shall gain.

Chapter 65 – In Julian’s time he and she were different dialects of the same word meaning that person, (he was widespread but the Northumbrian dialect she spread later). About this time he began to be applied more to males, and she, left adrift, was gradually adopted for females. In Julian’s Norfolk he still had no gender.

He that chesith God for love with reverent mekeness is sekir to be savid, which reverent mekenes seith the Lord mervelous grete and the selfe mervelous litil. And it is God will we drede nothing but Him, for the power of our enemy is taken in our freinds hand. And therfore al that God doith shall be gret likyng to us. Sixty-fifth chapter.

So I learned, whatever man or woman
chooses God in this life for love,
to be sure of being loved without end,
and that endless love works that grace in him.

Always, the more pleasure and joy we take
in this, with reverence and meekness,
the greater His pleasure, as it was shown.

This reverence that I mean is holy,
a courteous awe of our Lord,
to which meekness is close woven,
the creature, the created,
seeing its Lord marvellously great,
and itself marvellously small.

Those God loves have these virtues endlessly,
measurably, when seen and felt,
in our Lord’s gracious, most desired presence,
working marvellous, secure, true faith
and secure hope by its greatness of love,
in sweet and delectable awe.

It is God’s will that I see myself
bound as much to Him in love,
as He had been for me
for all that He has done,
and so should every soul think regarding his lover.

That is to say,
God’s charity makes such a unity in us
that when it is truly seen,
no man can leave Him for any other.
So our soul must know that God alone
has done for him all that has been done;
and this He shows to make us love Him
and no-one but Him.

For His will is that we understand
that all our enemy’s might is taken
into our friend’s hand,
and so the soul that knows this surely,
shall only be in awe of Him he loves.

He sets all our awe among passions,
bodily sickness and imaginations;
and so, though we may be in so much pain,
woe, and disease we can think of nothing
than the condition we are in or feel,
as soon as we may, we pass lightly over
and set it at naught.

And why?
For God wishes us to understand
that if we know and love Him,
and reverently respect Him,
we shall have peace and be in great rest,
and all He does shall greatly please us.

And this our Lord showed in these words:
Why should it then grieve you to suffer a while, since it is my will and my worship?

Now have I told you of fifteen Revelations,
as God chose to bring them to mind,
renewed since by enlightenments and touches,
in the spirit, I hope, in which they were shown.

Of the fifteen showings, the first began early,
about the hour of four in the morning,
and they continued, a fair progression
each surely following the other,
until none of the day was left.

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