He and his friends were in the grove of pines beyond my hedge, and He was talking to them.
I stood near the hedge and listened. And I knew who He was, for His fame had reached these shores ere He Himself visited them.
When He ceased speaking I approached Him, and I said, "Sir, come with these men and honour me and my roof."
And He smiled upon me and said, "Not this day, my friend. Not this day."
And there was a blessing in His words, and His voice enfolded me like a garment on a cold night.
Then He turned to His friends and said, "Behold a man who deems us not strangers, and though He has not seen us ere this day, he bids us to His threshold.
"Verily in my kingdom there are no strangers. Our life is but the life of all other men, given us that we may know all men, and in that knowledge love them.
"The deeds of all men are but our deeds, both the hidden and the revealed.
"I charge you not to be one self but rather many selves, the householder and the homeless, the ploughman and the sparrow that picks the grain ere it slumber in the earth, the giver who gives in gratitude, and the receiver who receives in pride and recognition.
"The beauty of the day is not only in what you see, but in what other men see.
"For this I have chosen you from among the many who have chosen me."
Then He turned to me again and smiled and said, "I say these things to you also, and you also shall remember them."
Then I entreated Him and said, "Master, will you not visit in my house?"
And He answered, "I know your heart, and I have visited your larger house."
And as He walked away with His disciples He said, "Good-night, and may your house be large enough to shelter all the wanderers of the land."