One who is loved has nothing to fear. Since I love, I cannot doubt that I am loved, anymore than I can doubt that I love. Nor can I fear to look on his face, since I have sensed his tenderness. In what have I known it? In this–not only has he sought me as I am, but he has shown me tenderness and caused me to seek him with confidence. How can I not respond to him when he seeks me, since I respond to him in tenderness? How can he be angry with me for seeking him, when he overlooked the contempt I showed for him? He will not drive away someone who seeks him, when he sought someone who spurned him.
The Spirit of the Word is gentle and brings me gentle greetings, speaking to me persuasively of the zeal and desire of the Word, which cannot be hidden from him. He searches the deep things of God and he knows his thoughts–thoughts of peace and not vengeance. How can I fail to be inspired to seek him, when I have experienced his mercy and been assured of his peace?
from Sermon 84 On the Song of Songs by Bernard of Clairvaux (CF 40, pp 192-193)