Though an host should encamp against me, my heart
shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in
this will I be confident.
“Though an host should encamp against me,” etc. If I love my
God, and I love him with a noble-spirited love, all my enemies
will fight against me in vain; I shall never fear them, and the whole
world cannot harm me. Charity cannot be offended, because
she takes offence at nothing. Enemies, enviers, slanderers,
persecutors, I defy you; if I love, I shall triumph over your
attacks. Ye can take away my goods; but if my love has a
generous spirit, I shall be always rich enough, and ye cannot
take away my love, which alone makes all my riches and treasures.
Ye may blacken my reputation; but as I hold you cheaply quit of
all homage of praise and applause, I, with all my heart, give you a
free leave to blame and to defame. Happily for me, ye cannot
blacken me before my God, and his esteem alone makes amends
to me, and rewards me, for all your contempt. Ye can persecute
my body, but there I even will help you on by my penances;
the sooner it shall perish, the sooner shall I be delivered from this
domestic enemy, which is a burden to me. What harm, then, can
ye do me? If I am resolved to suffer all and if I think I deserve
all the outrages ye can do me, ye will only give more loftiness of
spirit to my love, more brilliancy to my crown.
Jean Baptiste Elias Avrillon