— edited from Religious Maxims (1846).
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, June 30, 2016
Marks of True Humility: Seeking the Lowest Place
Deeply sensible of his entire weakness, dependence and unworthiness, it is entirely natural to him to seek and to take the lowest place. It does not occur to him, (certainly not as a matter of cherished and pleasing reflection,) that a more conspicuous position would be appropriate to him. But if the indications of the Providence of God should call him to a higher place, and impose upon him duties of a more elevated and conspicuous character, he does not refuse them. True lowliness of spirit leads him to feel that it would be very unsuitable for him to distrust the wisdom of God, and to take the direction of himself into his own hands. So that the same humility, which, in ordinary cases, leads him to decline places of responsibility and notoriety, leads him also to submit himself without hesitation to the guidance of Providence and of the Divine Will. It should always be remembered, therefore that the truly humble man, who has a profound sense of his own nothingness, and always feels at home in the lowest place, nevertheless realizes that he can do all things through the wisdom of God guiding him and the grace of God strengthening him. It does not follow, because true humility is distrustful of itself, that it is distrustful of God.