Finding God

Father Guibert explains what happens to the pious person who seeks God and finds Him: “Then it is that the soul enters into the possession of God. The august presence animates the pious soul, and feelings of the greatest ardour and generosity arise therein. God Himself is the cause of this revival of activity; for through Him life makes a fresh start, so that it is again true to say that God, gained possession of through piety, adds an increase of life.”

“But He does far more. For piety not only takes hold of Him as of a treasure that one clasps in one’s hand, nor like a guest whose comforting words one listens to; but it also incorporates Him within. . . . St. Paul, in his speech at Athens, tells us that God is all about us, like the air: ‘In Him we live and move and be’ (Acts 17:28). St. Peter goes further still when he says that we are made ‘partakers of the divine nature’ (2 Pet 1:4)! We are, surely, still men, but a divine influence penetrates us through and through; the life of God is united with ours to uplift and transfigure us. This is an impenetrable mystery that faith cannot but adore, and which reason can only admire.”

“God communicates His life to us in two ways: by nature and by grace. By nature, our life is only a pale likeness of His own. By grace, on the contrary, it is His very life that is given to us. It is, indeed, but a feeble ray emitted from its divine source, since the narrow prism of our soul can receive no more; but it is, in fine, a true ray coming from Him, and is rich with His own light and fruitfulness. And we will not only say of this life that it is the delicious fruit of piety, but it is piety itself, and constitutes its living activity.”

Quotations from Jean Guibert, On Piety (London: R. & T. Washbourne, Ltd., 1911).

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