Julian prayed for the health of someone she loved
but learned nothing.
She heard a friendly, internal voice,
‘Take it GENERALLY.
See the graciousness of the Lord in these visions.’
‘It is ever greater worship to Him
to see Him in everything
than in any special thing.’
The general does not exclude the special;
fullest joy sees God in everything.
Be sad for no thing
for all shall be well.
There is yet a deed to be done by God.
For all is not yet complete.
What it is,
how it will be
is hid from us now.
It is for all that shall be saved.
How many is all?
How many of all that are
Is all that are to be saved?
We should rejoice in all He shows
and all he hides,
and find in Him
This is the lesson:
what I pray for one
I must pray for all.
What is done for me
shall be done for the general.
Before miracles comes sorrow,
So we should know our own feebleness,
fallen into in our sin,
to make us meek,
to be in awe of God,
to cry for help and grace.
Miracles come after that,
of the high Might, Wisdom and Goodness of God,
showing His virtue and the joys of heaven
as much as is possible in this fleeting life,
to strengthen faith,
God brought to my mind that I should sin.
But for my pleasure in beholding Him
I did not attend readily to that showing;
so God mercifully waited,
and gave me grace to attend.
Then I took it personally,
but by the gracious comfort that followed,
as you shall see,
I was taught to accept it
for all my fellow-Christians:
all in general,
none in particular.
Our Lord showed me I would sin,
By me alone is understood all.
Therein I conceived a soft dread,
to which our Lord answered,
‘I keep you fully and surely.’
with more love, security and spiritual care
than I can or may tell.
For as it was shown that I should sin,
it was shown for the comfort, security and care
of all my fellow-Christians.
What may make me love my fellow-Christians more
than to see in God that He loves all,
all that shall be saved,
as one soul?
For in every sould that shall be saved
is a Godly Will that never assented to sin,
nor ever shall.
He loves us as well while we are here
as He shall when we are with Him there.
All our distress is from our failing love.
Also God showed that sin shall be no shame to man.
It shall be worship.
For just as for every sin there is an answering pain,
so for every sin the same soul is blessed with love:
just as different sins are punished with different pains
according to their grievious nature,
so shall they be rewarded with diverse joys in Heaven
according to the pain and sorrow they give the soul in earth.
For the soul that comes to Heaven is precious to God,
and the place so worshipful that God’s goodness
never suffers that soul to sin that comes there
without that with which sin shall be rewarded;
and it is made known without end,
and blissfully restored by surpassing worship.
For in this Sight my understanding was lifted into Heaven,
and God merrily brought David to my mind,
and others without number in the Old Testament;
and in the New Testament He brought Mary Magdelene,
and Peter and Paul to my mind,
and those of India; and Saint John of Beverly;
and others without number:
how their sins are known in the church in earth,
and it is no shame to them, but is all turned to worship.
In this our courteous Lord shows
they were here in part but are there in fullness.
There the token of sin is turned to worship.
Our Lord showed Saint John of Beverley,
very comfortably to us for homeliness;
reminding me that he is a dear neighbour, known to us.
God called him Saint John of Beverley plainly as we do,
with a most glad sweet cheer, showing how in His sight
he is a high and blissful saint in Heaven.
With this he mentioned that in his tender youth
he was a dearworthy servant to God,
loving God greatly, and in awe.
Yet God allowed him to fall,
mercifully keeping him so he did not perish.
Then God raised him to greatly more grace,
and by his contrition and meekness he had had in living,
God gave him in Heaven great joys,
surpassing all he would have had if he had not fallen.
This truth God shows in earth
with many miracles continually about his body.
And all this was to make us glad and merry in love.
Sin is the sharpest scourge to strike any soul.
It thoroughly beats man and woman,
making them hateful in their own sight
so much that they feel unworthy except to sink in hell,
until the Holy Ghost’s touch brings contrition,
turning bitterness to hope of God’s mercy.
Then our wounds begin to heal,
the soul to come alive,
turning to the life of Holy Church.
The Holy Spirit leads us to admit our sins,
nakedly, truly, with great sorrow and shame
that we have fouled God’s fair image.
This meekness greatly pleases God.
Our Lord keeps us very preciously
when we feel nearly forsaken,
deservedly cast away for our sin,
then, because of that meekness,
we are raised highly by God’s grace in His sight,
with so great contrition, compassion, and true longing to God,
such souls are suddenly delivered from sin and pain,
taken up to bliss,
and even made high saints,
our sorrow and penance here
turned to love and bliss in heaven;
our shame to worship and joy.
So we should not despair of our sin
for it does not stop Him loving us.
He wants us to know that he is the Ground of our being,
our whole life, in love,
our keeper and defender.
Our sorrow in our fallings and failings
draws us closer to Him.
He will never turn away.
This is a solemn friendship of our courteous Lord.
He keeps us so tenderly while we are in sin;
He shows us our sin by the light of His mercy and grace.
When we see ouself so foul,
Then we know His anguish for our sin.
We are stirred by the Holy Spirit to contrite prayer,
desiring with all our might to amend our life,
to lessen God’s anguish until we find rest
in soul and softness of conscience,
with true hope in His forgiveness.
Then our courteous Lord shows himself
merrily and cheerfully,
as though we had been in pain and prison,
saying sweetly, ‘My darling, I am glad you are come to me.
In all your woe I have been with you,
and now we are one in my love and bliss.
So sins are forgiven by mercy and grace,
and our souls received in worshipfull joy
by virtue of Christ’s passion.
But if any man or woman is stirred by folly
to say or think that if this is true
it is good to sin for greater reward,
or to see sin with lesser guilt,
this is untrue and in enmity with true love,
as though saying deceiving your lover does not matter
because your lover always forgives;
worse, that it is good to deceive your lover
so you can enjoy forgiveness;
knowing your lover will enter hell to forgive you.
When we, by God’s mercy and grace,
we aim at love and meekness,
we are made fair and clean.
As mighty and wise a God is to save men,
He is also willing.
Christ Himself is the foundation of all Christians.
He taught us to do good not ill.
Here we may see that He is Himself this love.
He does to us as He teaches us to do,
To be like Him in love to all our fellow-Christians
And to endlessly hate the sin and love the sinner.
And this word is an endless comfort:
‘I keep you securely’.