Monday, August 25, 2008

Wisdom from…

[Although these posts are, arguably, "the most awesome thing in the universe", I have chosen not to post them every day so that, perhaps, their impact may be greater, or last longer. The point of these quotes is to illuminate, stimulate, and convict readers at their depths in Christ (and even, hopefully, to enlighten, convict, and attract those outside Him), not merely to satisfy their sense of literary "mileage" online. It's probably worthwhile reading the same 'Wisdom from…' over two or three days. But without further ado…!]

JULIAN OF NORWICH (1342–1423): Our will wants God

Our lover is eternity, and has made us for himself alone, has restored us by his blessed passion, and keeps us in his blessed love. And all because he is goodness. Our lover desires indeed that our soul should cleave to him with all its might, and ever hold on to his goodness. Beyond our power to imagine does this most please God, and speed the soul on its course.

The love of God Most High for our soul is so wonderful that it surpasses all knowledge. No created being can know the greatness, the sweetness, the tenderness of the love that our Maker has for us. By his grace and help therefore let us in spirit stand and gaze, eternally marveling at the supreme, surpassing, single-minded, incalculable love that God, who is goodness, has for us. Then we can ask reverently of our lover whatever we will. For by nature our will wants God, and the good will of God wants us. We shall never cease wanting and longing until we possess him in fullness and joy. Then we shall have no further wants. Meanwhile his will is that we go on knowing and loving until we are perfected in heaven.
(Revelations of Divine Love, 68-71.)

In God, our 'want' truly coincides with our 'need', and vice versa. Outside of Him, our 'need' only falsely coincides with 'want', on a verbal level, in order to justify the latter with the former. Need, as I have said more than once, is the most overused word in any language. "It's only natural in this world to…. I need to…." No. It's only natural in this world to be supernatural in Christ.

Julian was an anchoress who lived in solitude in Norwich, England, where she received the sixteen "showings" or revelations of God's love in a series of experience-visions.

ST AUGUSTINE: Perseverance into Old Age

Please forgive me if I have spoken too much. I am a long-winded old man, and ill health has made me anxious. As you see, I have grown old with the passing years. But for a long time now, this ill health has made an old man of me. However, if God is pleased with what I have just said, he will give me strength. I will not desert you.
-- Sermon 355, 7

Prayer. Lord, with your help we have done what you commanded. Reward us, now, as you promised.
-- Sermon 31, 6

ST FRANCIS DE SALES:

Raise your eyes to Heaven and you will see that no one arrives there without hard work and continual afflictions. When things go wrong, say to yourself, "This is the road to Heaven. I see the harbor and I am sure that the tempests will not stop me from reaching it."
(Letters 1281; O. XVII, p. 347)

GK CHESTERTON:

ALL I have to urge is that I dislike the big Whiteley shop, and that I dislike Socialism because it will (according to Socialists) be so like that shop. It is its fulfilment, not its reversal. I do not object to Socialism, because it will revolutionize our commerce, but because it will leave it so horribly the same.
('What's Wrong with the World.')

8/18

3 comments:

Brad Haas said...

This just makes it even more the best thing in the universe.

the Cogitator said...

Might we even call it the "bestest" thing in the universe? ;)

Brad Haas said...

Bestest...er.

Do you enjoy Frank Sheed? He wrote some pretty wise wisdom.