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Whoever receives this child

  • CARYLL HOUSELANDER

We must learn to see Christ in others with the eyes of faith...


aaafrancis...because the whole orientation of our will, in which is the secret of peace, will depend upon whether we act as if we did see Christ in them or not.

It is part of God's plan for us that Christ shall come to us in everyone; it is in their particular role that we must learn to know him; he may come as a little child, making enormous demands, giving enormous consolation; he may come as a stranger, so that we must give the hospitality to a stranger that we should like to give to Christ; he may come to us in his Passion, disfigured by our sins and all sin, asking the utmost courage of us, that we may not be scandalized and may believe.  He may come to us as a servant and compel us to the extreme of humility which accepts his service, as Peter had to do, when he washed his feet, and as the disciples did with unquestioning joy, when he cooked their little meal on the seashore.

If we see everyone in our life as "another Christ we shall treat everyone with the reverence and objectivity that must grow into love, and as a matter of sheer logic we shall accept whatever they bring to us, in the way of joy or sorrow or responsibility, as coming from the hand of Christ; and because nothing comes from his hand that is not given for our ultimate happiness, we shall gradually learn that the things they do, the demands they make, all are part of God's plan for us.  Once that is understood we can never again feel completely frustrated by anyone, or lose the serenity of our minds by nursing a grievance.  Neither shall we ever again miss a joy that should have been ours through another person, because we dared not give ourselves to it, bravely.

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Acknowledgement

HouselanderCaryll Houselander. "Whoever receives this child." excerpt from The Risen Christ (London, U.K.: Bloomsbury Continuum, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing Plc., 1959).

Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Bloomsbury Continuum. This excerpt appeared in Magnificat.

The Author

house1house2Caryll Houselander (1901-1954) was a British Roman Catholic laywoman; a mystic, writer, artist, visionary and healer. Her first book, This War is the Passion, written during World War II, launched her prolific writing career. She is best known for: A Rocking Horse Catholic, The Reed of God, The Way of the Cross, This War is the Passion, The Risen ChristThe Letters Of Caryll Houselander: Her Spiritual Legacy, and Wood of the Cradle, Wood of the Cross: The Little Way of the Infant Jesus.

Copyright © 1959 Continuum International
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