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, February 3, 2024

Avoid Inordinate Partialities

We may love wrongly also, when we knowingly place our love upon wrong objects; or perhaps we should rather say in this case, upon wrong persons. And accordingly it is a part of Christian duty to avoid wrongly placed and inordinate partialities; those particular attachments to certain persons, which generally exist without adequate reason, and which are apt to be attended with corresponding dislikes to other persons. We do not mean to say, that we are bound to bestow an equal confidence and an equal affection upon all persons alike; but true Christianity requires, that, where we make a difference, we should do it for reasons and on grounds, which God can approve. It ought to be more generally remembered than it is, that we have no more right to place our affections on objects or persons, irrespective of God’s will, than we have to regulate and control our outward actions in disregard of his will. And it is implied in regarding his will in this case as well as in others, that we must have a heart humbly acquiescent in his providences, and must look to him in the exercise of faith, in order that we may be guided right. It is proper, therefore, to say to all, who desire to do what God would have them do, choose your friends in the Lord. Or rather look to the Lord, to choose them for you. And then you will be likely, not only to choose them right, but to keep them long. And what otherwise would fail to be the case, it will be a friendship hallowed by the divine blessing.

— from The Life of Faith, Part 2, Chapter 7.

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