— edited from A Treatise on Divine Union (1851) Part 6, Chapter 4.
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.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Remain Where God Has Placed You
It is one of the first principles in the doctrines of holiness, that men should remain patiently and quietly where God has placed them, until they receive from himself the intimations of departure. It was thus that Jesus grew up in the humble retirement of a carpenter's family, a brother among brothers and sisters, obeying his parents in love, eating and drinking at their common table, sympathizing in their joys and sorrows, laboring daily with those who were brought up in the same form of labor, and regarding the yoke of his earthly position as entirely light and easy, because it was the yoke of his heavenly Father's providence. He remained there till that unerring Providence, arranging around him other circumstances, and arousing within him desires corresponding to those circumstances, led him forth from the quiet home of Mary and Joseph, to the trials and duties of a new position, — to persecution and death. How different was his conduct from that of the rebellious and unhappy youth of whom he has given an account in one of his affecting parables! The prodigal son, in the pride of self-wisdom and self-will, demanded his share of his father's goods before the time, which was rapidly drawing nigh, when the arrangements of Providence would have freely offered them. As he went forth in violation of the providential law, which required him to wait till a later period, he went forth without the presence and approbation of the God of providence, and found, in the famine and wretchedness of a distant land, that sure retribution which always follows any movement made in our own strength and choice.