LETTERS

 

LT 9

It seems when Pauline was little and when she made excuses to Aunt at Le Mans, Aunt used to say to her: So many holes, so many pegs! But with me it’s even worse. So I want to correct myself, and, into each little hole, put a pretty little flower which I’ll offer to little Jesus to prepare myself for my First Communion. Won’t you, dear Mother, pray for this? Oh! Yes, this beautiful moment will come quickly, and how happy I shall be to have many flowers to offer Him when the little Jesus comes into my heart.

 

LT 34

Oh! Really pray to God for me. Since Monsignor isn’t willing, the last step that remains for me is to speak to the pope, but this has to be possible. It has to be Little Jesus, who is preparing all in order that His little ball has only to roll where He wills.

 

LT 36

I am the Child Jesus’ little ball; if He wishes to break His toy, He is free. Yes, I will all that He wills.

 

LT 49

You, who are an eagle called to soar in the heights and to fix your gaze on the sun, pray for the very feeble little reed that is at the bottom of the valley, the least breeze makes it bend.

Ask that your little daughter always remain a little grain of sand, truly unknown, truly hidden from all eyes, that Jesus alone may be able to see it, and that it may become smaller and smaller, that it may be reduced to nothing...

 

LT 54

The grain of sand, in spite of its littleness, whishes to form beautiful Eternities; it wishes to form some for the souls of sinners, but, alas, it is still not little enough or light enough.

Jesus alone! Nothing but Him. The grain of sand is so little that, if it wanted to place someone other than Him in its heart, there would be no room for Jesus...

 

LT 74

He is riddling me with pinpricks; the poor little ball is exhausted. All over it has very little holes which make it suffer more than if it had only one large one...! Nothing near Jesus. Aridity...! Sleep...! But at least there is silence...! Silence does good to the soul... But creatures! Oh! Creatures...! The little ball shudders from them...!

Understand Jesus’ little toy...! When it is the sweet Friend who punctures His ball Himself, suffering is only sweetness, His hand is so gentle...! But creatures...! Those who surround me are very good, but there is something, I don’t know what, that repels me...! I cannot give you any explanation. Understand your little soul. I am, however, very happy, happy to suffer what Jesus wants me to suffer. If He doesn’t directly puncture His little ball, it is really He who directs the hand that punctures it...! Since Jesus wants to sleep why will I hinder Him? I am only too happy that He doesn’t bother with me, for He is showing me that I am not a stranger when treating me this way, for, I assure you, He is going to no trouble about carrying on a conversation with me...!

Pray that the grain of sand become an atom seen only by the eyes of Jesus!

 

LT 89

We’d never want to fall...? What does it matter, my Jesus, if I fall at each moment; I see my weakness through this and this is a great gain for me... You can see through this what I can do and now you will be more tempted to carry me in Your arms... If you do not do it, it is because this pleases You to see me on the ground... Then I am not going to be disturbed, but I shall always stretch out my arms suppliant and filled with love...! I cannot believe that You would abandon me...!

 

LT 95

Pray for the poor little grain of sand, that the grain of sand be always in its place, that is to say, under the feet of all, that no one may think of it, that its existence be, so to speak, unknown. The grain of sand does not desire to be humbled; this is still too glorious since one would be obliged to be occupied with it. It desires only one thing, to be forgotten, counted for nothing...! But it desires to be seen by Jesus. If the eyes of creatures cannot be lowered to look at it, may, at least, the blood stained Face of Jesus be turned towards it... It desires only one look, one look...!

If it were possible for a grain of sand to console Jesus, to wipe away His tears, there really is such a grain that would like to do it... May Jesus take the poor grain of sand and hide it in His adorable Face... There, the poor atom will no longer have anything to fear, it will be sure of no longer sinning!

 

LT 103

You know, light lark, that you have a thread on your foot, and, as high as you may soar, you will have to drag your burden... but a grain of sand isn’t heavy, and it will be lighter if only you ask Jesus...

Oh! How it longs to be reduced to nothing, to be unknown by all creatures. Poor little thing, it desires nothing any longer, nothing but to be forgotten... not contempt, insults, this would be too glorious for a grain of sand. Were one to despise it, one would have to see it. But to be forgotten...! Yes, I want to be forgotten, and this, not only by creatures but by myself. I’d like to be reduced to nothing to such an extent as to have no desire whatsoever... The glory of Jesus, that is all; as for my own glory, I abandon it to Him, and, if He seems to forget me, He is free since I am no longer my own but His... And He will more quickly grow tired of making me wait than I shall grow tired of waiting for Him...!

 

LT 141

When I think of you in the presence of the one friend of our souls, it is always simplicity that is presented to me as the distinctive characteristic of your heart... Celine...! simple little Celine-flower, do not envy garden flowers. Jesus has not said to us: “I am the flower of the gardens, the cultivated rose”, but He tells us: “I am the flower of the fields and the Lily of the valleys.”

Well, I thought this morning near the Tabernacle, that my Celine, the little flower of Jesus, had to be and to remain always a drop of dew hidden in the divine corolla of the beautiful Lily of the valleys. A drop of dew, what is more simple and more pure? It is not the clouds that have formed it since, when the blue of the sky is star-studded, the dew descends on the flowers; it is not comparable to the rain that it surpasses in freshness and beauty. Dew exists only at night; as soon as the sun darts its warm rays, it distils the charming pearls that sparkle on the tips of blades of grass in the meadow, and the dew is changed into a light vapour. Celine is a little drop of dew that has not been formed by the clouds but has descended from the beautiful heaven, its homeland. During the night of life, its mission is to hide itself in the heart of the flower of the fields; no human eye is to discover it there, only the calyx possessing the little drop will know its freshness.

Blessed little drop of dew that is known only by Jesus...! Do not stop to consider the course of resounding rivers that cause admiration in creatures. Do not even envy the clear brook winding in the meadow. No doubt its murmur is very sweet, but creatures can hear it... and then the calyx of the flower of the fields would be unable to contain it. It could no be for Jesus alone. To be His, one must remain little, little like a drop of dew...! Oh! How few are the souls who aspire to remain little in this way...! But, they say, are not the river and the brook more useful than the drop of dew, what does it do? It is good for nothing except to refresh for a few moments a flower of the fields which is today and will have to disappeared tomorrow.

Undoubtedly these person are right, the drop of dew is good only for that; but they do not know the wild flower that willed to live on our earth of exile and to remain there during the short night of life. If they did know it, they would understand the reproach that Jesus made in days gone to Martha... Our Beloved has no need of our beautiful thoughts and our dazzling works. If He wants sublime thoughts, does He not have His angels, His legions of heavenly spirits whose knowledge infinitely surpasses that of the greatest geniuses of our sad earth?

It is not, then, intelligence and talents that Jesus has come to seek here below. He became the flower of the fields only in order to show us how much He cherished simplicity. The Lily of the valley longs only for a little drop of dew... And it is for this reason He has created one whose name is Celine...! During the night of life, she will have to remain hidden from every human glance, but when the shadows begin to lengthen, when the Flower of the fields becomes the Sun of Justice, and when He come to carry out His giant’s race, will He forget His little drop of dew...? Oh, no! As soon as He appears in glory, the companion of His exile will appear there too. The divine Sun will cast on her one of His rays of love, and immediately to the eyes of the dazzled angels and saints will be shown the poor little drop of dew that will sparkle like a precious diamond which, reflecting the Sun of Justice, will have become like Him. But this is not all. The divine Star, gazing at His drop of dew, will draw it to Himself; it will ascend like a light vapour and will go to place itself for eternity in the boson of the burning furnace of uncreated love, and it will forever united to Him. Just as on earth it had been the faithful companion of His exile, His insults, in the same way it will reign eternally in heaven...

Into what astonishment will be plunged those who, in this world, had considered the little drop of dew as useless...! No doubt, they will have an excuse: the gift of God had not been revealed to them; they have not brought their heart close to that of the Flower of the fields, and they had not understood those stirring words: “Give me to drink.” Jesus does not call all souls to be drops of dew; He wills that there be precious liqueurs that creatures appreciate and that console them in their needs, but He keeps for Himself a drop of dew. This is His only desire...

What a privilege to be called to so lofty a mission...! But to respond to it, how simple we must remain... Jesus knows very well that on earth it is difficult to preserve oneself pure, so He wills that His drops of dew forget themselves. He is pleased to contemplate them, but He alone looks at them, and, as for themselves, not realising their value, they deem themselves as beneath other creatures... That is what the Lily of the valleys desires.

 

LT 144

I am not surprised that you understand nothing that is taking place in your soul. A little child all alone on the sea, in a boat lost in the midst of the stormy waves, could she know whether she is close or far from port? While her eyes still contemplate the shore which she left, she knows how far she had gone, and, seeing the land getting farther away, she cannot contain her childish joy. Oh! She says, here I am soon at the end of my journey. But the more the shore recedes, the vaster the ocean also appears. Then the little child’s knowledge is reduced to nothing, she no longer knows where her boat is going. She does not know how to control the rudder, and the only thing she can do is abandon herself and allow her, sail to flutter in the wind...

My Celine, the little child of Jesus, is all alone in a little boat; the land has disappeared from her eyes, she does not know where she is going, whether she is advancing or if she is going backward... Little Therese knows, and she is sure her Celine is on the open sea; the boat carrying her is advancing with full sails toward the port, and the rudder which Celine cannot even see is not without pilot. Jesus is there, sleeping as in days gone by, in the boat of the fishermen of Galilee. He is sleeping... and Celine does not see Him, for night has fallen on the boat... Celine does not hear the voice of Jesus. The wind is blowing... she hears it; she sees the darkness... and Jesus is always sleeping. However, if He were to awaken only for an instant, He would have only to command the wind and the sea, and there would be a great calm. The night would become brighter than the day, Celine would see the divine glance of Jesus, and her soul would be consoled... But Jesus, too, would no longer be sleeping, and He is so fatigued...! His divine feet are tired from going after sinners, and in Celine’s boat Jesus is sleeping so peacefully.

 

LT 176

Now God continues to direct me by the same road, I have only one desire, that of doing His will. Perhaps you remember how in the past I used to love calling myself “Jesus’ little plaything.” Even now I am happy to be this; however, I have thought that the divine Child had many other souls filled with sublime virtues who call themselves “His toys.” I thought, then, they were His beautiful toys and my poor soul was only a little toy without any value... to console myself, I said: Often little children are more pleased with little toys than they can leave aside or take up, break or kiss at their whim than with others of a greater value which they almost dare not to touch... Then I rejoiced at being poor, I wanted to become this more and more each day, in order that Jesus may take more delight in playing with me.

 

LT 178

Does not truth come out of the mouths of children? Well, you must forgive me if I speak the truth, I who am and want to remain always a child.

 

LT 191

I find perfection very easy to practice because I have understood it is a matter of taking hold of Jesus by His Heart... Look at a little child who has just annoyed his mother by flying into a temper or by disobeying her. If he hides away in a corner in a sulky mood and if he cries in fear of being punished, his mamma will not pardon him, certainly, not his fault. But if he comes to her, holding out his little arms, smiling and saying: “Kiss me, I will not do it again,” will his mother be able not to press him to her heart tenderly and forget his childish mischief...? However, she knows her dear little one will do it again on the next occasion, but this does not matter; if he takes her again by her heart, he will not be punished...

 

LT 194

Ah! How beautiful is the little child’s vocation! It is not one mission that she must evangelise but all missions. How will she do this...? By loving, by sleeping, by throwing flowers to Jesus when He is asleep. Then Jesus will take these flowers, and, giving them an inestimable value, He will throw them in His turn; He will have them fly over all shores and will save souls with the flowers, with the love of the little child, who will see nothing but will always smile even through her tears...!

 

LT 195

The most painful, the most loving martyrdom is ours since Jesus alone sees it. It will never be revealed to creatures on earth, but when the Lamb will open the book of life, what a surprise for the heavenly court to hear proclaimed with the names of missionaries and martyrs those of poor little children who will have never preformed dazzling actions...

 

LT 196

Jesus is pleased to show me the only road which leads to this divine furnace, and this road is the abandonment of the little child who sleeps without fear in his Father’s arms... “Whoever is a little one, let him come to me” said the Holy Spirit through the mouth of Solomon, and this same Spirit of Love has said again: “Mercy is granted to little ones.” In His name, the Prophet Isaiah reveals to us that on the last day: “The Lord will lead his flock into pastures, he will gather together the little lambs and will press them to his bosom,” and as though all these promises were not enough, the same Prophet, whose inspired glance was already plunged into the eternal depths, cried out in the Lord’s name: “As a mother caresses her child, so will I comfort you; I will carry you on my bosom, and I shall rock you on my knees.”

Oh, dear Godmother, after language like this, there is nothing to do but be silent and weep with gratitude and love... Ah! If all weak and imperfect souls felt what the littlest of all souls feels, the soul of your little Therese, not one would despair of reaching the summit of the mountain of love, since Jesus does not ask for great actions but only abandonment and gratitude.

 

LT 197

We must consent to remain always poor and without strength, and this is the difficulty, for: “The truly poor in spirit, where do we find him? You must look for him from afar,” said the psalmist... He does not say that you must look for him among great souls, but “from afar,” that is to say in lowliness, in nothingness... Ah! Let us remain then very far from all that sparkles, let us love our littleness, let us love to feel nothing, then we shall be poor in spirit, and Jesus will come to look for us, and however far we may be, He sill transform us in flames of love... Oh! How I would like to be able to make you understand what I feel...! It is confidence and nothing but confidence that must lead us to Love... Does not fear lead to Justice...?

 

LT 205

How naughty to spend one’s night in fretting, instead of falling asleep on the Heart of Jesus...! If the night frightens the little child, if she complains at not seeing Him who is carrying her, let her close her eyes, let her willingly make the sacrifice that is asked of her, and then let her await sleep... When she keeps herself peaceful in this way, the night which she is no longer looking at will be unable to frighten her, and soon calm, if not joy, will be reborn in her little heart... Is it too much to ask the little child to close her eyes...? Not to struggle against the chimeras of the night...? No, it is not too much, and the little child will abandon herself, she will believe that Jesus is carrying her, she will consent not to see Him and to leave far behind the empty fear of being unfaithful (a fear not fitting for a little child).

 

LT 206

The little ambassador has no desire to jump from the boat, but he is here to show heaven to the little child. He wills that all the child’s glances, all her attention be for Jesus. So he would be very happy to see the little child deprived of consolations too infantile and unworthy of a missionary and a warrior... I love my little child very much... and Jesus loves even more.

 

LT 212

Oh! How pleased I am with you... All year you have amused me very much by playing ninepins. I was so pleased that the angelic court was surprised and charmed; more than one little cherub asked me why I had not made him a child... More than one asked me if the melody of his harp was not more pleasing to me than your joyful laugh when you knocked down a pin with the bowl of you love. I answered my little cherubs that they were not to be sorry for not having been children since one day they would be able to play with you in the meadows of heaven; I told them, certainly, your smile was more sweet to me than their melodies because you could not play and smile except by suffering, but forgetting yourself.

Beloved little spouse, I have something to ask you, will you refuse me...? Oh, no! You love me too much for that. Well, I shall admit I would like to change the game; the ninepins amuse me, but I would now like to spin the top, and if you wish you will be my top. I am giving you one as a model. You see it is not beautiful, whoever does not know how to use it will kick it away with his foot. But a child will leap with joy when seeing it and will say: “Ah! How amusing, this can spin all day long without stopping.”

I, little Jesus, love you even though your are without any charms, and I am asking you always to spin in order to amuse me... But strokes of the whip are necessary to make the top spin... Well! Let the Sisters render you this service and be thankful to them who will be the most assiduous in not letting you relent in your spinning. When I have been well entertained but you, I will take you up above and we shall play without any suffering...

 

LT 226

My way is all confidence and love. I do not understand souls who fear a Friend so tender. At times, when I am reading certain spiritual treatises in which perfection is shown through a thousand obstacles, surrounded by a crowd of illusions, my poor little mind quickly tires; I close the learned book that is breaking my head and drying up my heart, and I take up Holy Scripture. Then all seems luminous to me; a single word uncovers for my soul infinite horizons, perfection seems simple to me, I see it is sufficient to recognise one’s nothingness and to abandon oneself as a child into God’s arms.

Leaving to great souls, to great minds the beautiful books I cannot understand, much less put into practice, I rejoice at being little since children alone and those who resemble them will be admitted to the heavenly banquet. I am very happy there are many mansions in God’s kingdom, for if there were only the one whose description and road seems incomprehensible to me, I would not be able to enter there.

 

LT 229

The good you have done to my soul, you have done to Jesus, for He said: “What you have done to the least of my brethren, you have done to me...” And I am the one who is the least...!

 

LT 241

Ah! Do not fear to tell Him you love Him, even without feeling it. This is the way to force Jesus to help you, to carry you like a little child too feeble to walk.

Above all, let us be little, so little that everybody may trample us underfoot, without our even having the appearance of feeling it and suffering from it...

 

LT 258

We must go to heaven by the same way, that of suffering united to love. When I shall be in port, I shall teach you, dear little Brother of my soul, how you must sail the stormy sea of the world with the abandonment and the love of a child who knows his Father loves him and would be unable to leave him in the hour of danger.

I would like to try to make you understand by means of a very simple comparison how much Jesus loves even imperfect souls who confide in Him. I picture a father who has two children, mischievous and disobedient, and when he comes to punish them, he sees one of them who trembles and gets away from him in terror, having, however, in the bottom of his hear the feeling that he deserves to be punished; and his brother, on the contrary, throws himself into his father’s arms, saying that he is sorry for having caused him any trouble, that he loves him, and to prove it he will be good from now on, and if this child asks his father to punish him with a kiss, I do not believe that the heart of the happy father could resist the filial confidence of his child, whose sincerity and love he knows. He realises, however that more than once his son will fall into the same faults, but he is prepared to pardon him always, if his son always take shim by his heart... I say nothing to you about the first child, dear little Brother, you must know whether his father can love him as much and treat him with the same indulgence as the other...