The life of those who dwell in the secret place of the Most High may be called a Hidden Life, because the animating principle, the vital or operative element, is not so much in itself as in another. It is a life grafted into another life. It is the life of the soul, incorporated into the life of Christ; and in such a way, that, while it has a distinct vitality, it has so very much in the sense, in which the branch of a tree may be said to have a distinct vitality from the root.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Subjection of Every Natural Desire to God

We take the liberty to urge upon all, who wish to live the true inward life, the importance of not resting satisfied with mere intellectual light, however valuable it may be; of not resting satisfied with joyful or any other emotions, which stop and terminate in themselves; and of acting invariably upon the principle, that nothing ought to satisfy themselves, and that nothing can satisfy God, but the subjection of every natural desire, and the substitution of desires, affections, and purposes, which terminate in God and God alone.

Move onward, therefore, with a firmness which no obstacles shall shake, to the entire revolution and renewal of the inward nature; the increased illumination of the conscience, that great light of the mind; the sanctification of the desires, which embrace the whole propensive and "affectional" nature; and the subjection of the will, which is naturally so proud and rebellious, to the will of God.

Fear not that God will desert you. Aided by the intellectual light which he has seen fit to give, and by those favorable emotions he has already excited, form the fixed, unalterable purpose, "the high resolve," in reliance upon divine grace, to be wholly his. No doubt, in many cases, the struggle will be severe. The unsanctified desires especially, including the various appetites, propensities, and affections, which form so important a part of our nature, are selfish and tenacious; and, considered as opposed to any and all human strength, are undoubtedly invincible. But God has said, "My grace is sufficient for thee." His word shall never fail; and least of all, in such a struggle, in which his own heart of infinite love is enlisted. Desire after desire will fall; idol after idol will be demolished; the Christian graces will successively gain the ascendancy; till the Holy Ghost shall take up his permanent residence in his own purified temple, and victory will sit crowned in the center of the heart.

Jehovah, sovereign of my heart!
My joy by night and day!
From Thee, oh may I never part,
From Thee ne'er go astray.
Whene'er allurements round me stand,
And tempt me from my choice;
Oh, let me find thy gracious hand,
Oh, let me hear thy voice!

— edited from The Interior or Hidden Life (1844) Part 1, Chapter 16.

No comments:

Post a Comment