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.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

God is the Only True Fountain of Life

But if God is the only true Fountain, those who seek any other fountains will find them "broken cisterns, that can hold no water." When moral beings, in the exercise of their moral option, choose to seek their support and life from any source separate from God himself, they necessarily die. It cannot be otherwise. Created beings, as we have already seen, are necessarily dependent on their Creator. They have no power of making that which is not already made; — no power of absolute origination. It is true they have the power of choice, but they must choose among the things that are. They must either choose God, or that which is not God. If they choose, as their source of life and of supply, that which is not God, they look for help to that which has no help in itself, for life to that which has no life in itself, much less help and life for another. They ask "for bread, and they find a stone;" they ask "for a fish, and they find a serpent." They are compelled to say, in the language of the prodigal son, my father's hired servants "have bread enough and to spare, but I perish with hunger."

Their freedom, invaluable as it is, does not give them the power of doing or of enduring impossibilities, of drinking without water, of eating without food, of receiving while they turn aside and reject the hand of the great Giver.

A Treatise on Divine Union (1851) Part 1, Chapter 5.

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