Page:Selections from the writings of Kierkegaard.djvu/159
COME HITHER ALL YE THAT LABOR AND ARE HEAVY LADEN, I WILL GIVE YOU REST.
What enormous multiplicity, what an almost boundless adversity, of people invited; for a man, a lowly man, may, indeed, try to enumerate only a few of these diversities—that he who invites must invite all men, even if every one especially and individually.
The invitation goes forth, then—along the highways and byways, and along the loneliest paths; aye, goes forth ere there is a path so lonely that one man only, and no one else, knows of it, and goes forth where there is but one track, the track of the wretched one who fled along that path with his misery, that and no other track; goes forth even where there is no path to show how one may return: even where the invitation penetrates and by itself easily and surely finds its way back—most easily, indeed, when it brings the fugitive along to him that issued the invitation. Come hither, come hither all ye, also thou, and thou, and thou, too, thou loneliest of all fugitives!
Thus the invitation goes forth and remains standing, wheresoever there is a parting of the ways, in order to call out. Ah, just as the trumpet call of the soldiers is directed to the four quarters of the globe, likewise does this invitation sound wherever there is a meeting of roads; with no uncertain sound—for who would then come?—but with the certitude of eternity.
It stands by the parting of the ways where worldly and earthly sufferings have set down their crosses, and calls out: Come hither, all ye poor and wretched ones, ye who in poverty must slave in order to assure yourselves, not of a care‑free, but of a toilsome, future; ah, bitter contradiction, to have to slave for—a s s u r i n gone's self of that under which one groans, of that which onef l e e s!Ye despised and overlooked ones, about whose existence no one, aye, no one is concerned, not so much even as about some domestic