"God is the strangest of all lovers;
His ways are fast explaining.
He sets his heart on a soul; He says to Himself,
"Here I will rest My love."
But He does not woo her with flowers or jewels
Or words that are set to music,
No names endearing, no kindled praise
His heart's direction prove
His jealousy is an infinite thing; He stalks
the soul with sorrow.
He tramples the bloom, He blots the sun
That could make her vision dim,
He robs and breaks and destroys...there is nothing
At last but her own shame, her own affliction.
And then He comes and there is nothing in the
Vast world but Him and her love of Him.
Not till the great rebellions die and her will
Is safe in His hands forever
Does He open the door of light and
His tendernesses fall,
And then for what is seen in the soul's virgin places,
for what is heard in the heart there
Is no speech at all.
God is a strange lover; the story of His love
Is most surprising.
There is no proud queen in her cloth of gold;
Over and over again
There is only, deep in the soul, a poor
Disheveled woman weeping...
For us who have need of a picture and words:
By Jessica Powers, Carmelite Nun
(Painting by Ambrosius Benson)