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, June 8, 2016

Recognizing the Spirit's Guidance: Tranquility

When we are led by the Holy Spirit, there will be a subdued, tranquil, and well regulated state of the natural sensibilities, in distinction from the moral sensibilities or conscience; that is to say, of the various appetites, the propensive principles, and the affections. It is well understood, that when we are led by the world or by Satan, the various natural propensities and affections, which constitute what we understand by the natural sensibilities, are, in general, ill regulated, agitated, and turbulent. A really worldly man is either externally, or internally, an agitated man; generally in movement and generally discordant with himself; resembling the troubled sea, and casting up to the surface of his spirit mire and dirt. On the contrary, he, who is led by the Holy Spirit, with the exception of those occasional agitations arising from  purely instinctive impulses, which do not recognize the control of reason and the will, is always subdued, patient, quiet.  His natural propensities, which, in persons who have not experienced the same grace, are so turbulent and violent, run peaceably and appropriately in the channels, which God has assigned to them.  His  natural  affections,  which so often become the masters and tyrants of the mind, submit to the authority of conscience and the will. The inroads and shocks of the heaviest afflictions pass over him, and leave his inward submission and his peace unbroken. A divine tranquility is written, upon the emotions and desires, upon the affections that linger upon the past, and upon the hopes that move onward to the future. In this respect, being under this divine and transcendent teaching, he is like his heavenly Father. The Infinite Mind is always tranquil.

— edited from The Interior or Hidden Life (2nd edition, 1844) Part 3, Chapter 6.

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