First Meditation: The Creation

September 27, 2021 • 3 min

From Introduction to the Devout Life, page 17
By St. Francis de Sales


First Meditation.—The Creation.


  1. Place yourself in the presence of Gnd.
  2. Beseech Him to inspire you.


  1. Consider that not many years ago you were not yet in the world, and that your being was a mere nothing. Where were we, O my soul, at that time?—the world had then lasted so many ages, and yet we existed not.

  2. God has formed you out of nothing, to make you what you are: purely of his own goodness, having no need whatsoever of you.

  3. Consider the being that God has given you, for it is the highest in the visible world, capable of eternal life, and of being perfectly united to his Divine Majesty.


  1. Humble yourself exceedingly in the presence of God, saying in your heart with the Psalmist: O Lord, I am in thy sight as a mere nothing, and how hast Thou thought of me to create me? Alas! my soul, thou wert lost in that ancient nothing, and hadst yet been there had not God drawn thee from thence: and what couldst thou have done remaining there?

  2. Give thanks to God: O my great and good Creator, how am I indebted to Thee, since Thou hast vouchsafed to make me out of nothing, and by thy great mercy to make me what I am. What can I do to bless thy holy name as I ought, and to render due thanks to thy inestimable goodness?

  3. Confound yourself: But, alas! my Creator, instead of uniting myself to Thee, by love and service, I have become rebellious by my inordinate affections, wandering and straying from Thee, to unite myself to sin: valuing thy goodness no more than if Thou hadst not been my Creator.

  4. Prostrate yourself before God: O my soul, know that the Lord is thy God: it is He that has made thee, and not thou thyself. O God, I am the work of thy hand.

    I will not, henceforth, take pleasure in myself, since of myself I am nothing. Why dost thou magnify thyself, O dust and ashes! yea, rather, O mere nothing, why dost thou exalt thyself? To humble myself, therefore, I resolve to do such-and-such things, to suffer such-and-such disgraces. I will change my life, henceforth follow my Creator, and esteem myself honoured with that condition and being which He has given me, employing it entirely in obedience to his will, by such means as shall be taught me, and as I shall learn from my spiritual father.


  1. Give thanks to God: Bless thy God, O my soul, and let all my being praise his holy name, for his goodness has drawn me, and his mercy has created me out of nothing.

  2. Offering: O my God, I offer to Thee the being which Thou hast given me; from my heart I dedicate and consecrate it to Thee.

  3. Prayer: O God, strengthen me in these affections and resolutions. O holy Virgin, recommend them to the mercy of thy Son, with all for whom I ought to pray, &c. Pater, Ave, Credo.

    After your prayer, out of these considerations which you have made, make a little spiritual nosegay to smell all the rest of the day.

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