“This child is destined”
It was the Son of God’s love for his Father and his love for men which attracted him to earth. The feeling which occupied and filled his Sacred Heart was the desire of offering himself as a sacrifice to his Father to repair the glory of God and to save the human race…And what was this will of God? It was a will infinitely severe, according to which Jesus Christ was to take upon himself our sins and to bear the heavy weight of the divine justice. Therefore, when he was born, he united his will to this will of his Father, and submitted himself to it with the greatest love. From his very cradle he contemplated the cross, he longed after it, and the first desire of his heart was to die upon the cross to appease his Father’s just anger and to redeem us.
Let us learn from this that the cross must be the chief object of the interior life, that the first thing God presents us with is the cross, and that the first feeling of a heart which gives itself to God is the accepting of the cross. Now, whoever accepts the cross means by that a total forgetfulness of self, a total loss of self in God, and a complete sacrifice of all his own interests, that he may think only of the interests of God. God alone knows how far this sacrifice ought to extend, since it is God who proposes it to us, who inspires us with courage to accept it, and who gives us the strength to accomplish his will. But we on our part must set no bounds to our sacrifice; we must accept it in its fullest extent, and without any restriction, we must contemplate it without ceasing, and must long after its consummation as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ did.