Father Cassilly says of the children of God on earth: “We are not as happy as we should expect to be. First of all, we do not see our Father with our bodily eyes, at times He seems so very far away, and earth is dreary and desolate, not at all like the cheery, joyful place we should wish. And many things we covet are denied us.” But this does not mean that God has forgotten us or that He does not love us.
Father Cassilly explains: “Most people on earth are destined to dwell in two natural homes, one as children where they enjoy their parents’ love and protection, and the other where they preside as parents themselves and bestow on their offspring the same care and affection they previously received. The first home is an apprenticeship for the second. Childhood is a necessary preparation for the proper discharge of the responsibilities of parenthood. And this is pretty much all of life for most people—to be children themselves, and in turn prepare other children to take their place when they have gone.”
“Now, as we have two natural homes, we have also two supernatural homes, and the first in preparation for the second. Our second supernatural home will be in heaven, where never for a moment during endless ages shall we be out of sight of the blissful vision of our Father’s face. We have also in this life a true supernatural home, where we live united with our Father by grace; but as our present existence is a probation and trial, wherein we must labor and toil and suffer and get ready for translation into the kingdom of light, it is necessary that a veil be drawn around the sunshine of God’s presence, lest we become too enamored of our earthly existence. Were it always summer in our spiritual home on earth, did we ever bask in the light of His love, and taste the delights of His affection, we should almost forget we were in exile and cease to yearn for our eternal home. No, earth at its best is but a place of trial and purgation.”
Yet, in this vale of tears “we have faith to enable us to see and know God, to teach us we are His loved children. In all the incidents of life we perceive His controlling hand, tempering the cold and heat, sheltering us under His protecting mantle. What is there we have not received from Him? He has chosen us to be favored members of His household. . . . He is thinking of us and our affairs, planning for our advantage, sometimes sending joys, and then allowing trials to beset us that we may be forced to seek relief in His fatherly arms.”
Quotations from Francis Cassilly, A Story of Love, 2d ed. (St. Louis: B. Herder, 1917).