Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Joys Greater than This LIfe?

How can there be joys that are greater than those we get from this life?  It is often hard to remember in our daily struggles that this life is temporary and we are destined for eternal life with God.  Too often we find our minds locking us in on the activities of this world to the exclusion of God's kingdom.  This is the spiritual battle we are engaged in, to always remember to lift our eyes and hearts to that which is beyond all we can see, hear, taste, smell and touch.

Saint Isaac the Syrian says the following:
The joy that is in God is stronger than this present life.  And he who finds this joy, not only will he not pay attention to the passions, but he will not even give a thought to his own life, not will he have awareness of anything else, if his experience of this joy is true.  Love is sweeter than life.  And the concord with God from which love is born is sweeter than honey and the honey comb.  It does not seem grievous to Love to undergo a bitter death for the sake of he beloved... And to the heart which has received this joy every sweetness of this world seems superfluous.  for there is nothing which can be likened to sweetness of the knowledge of God."

Source: Wounded by Love, p 101 - Homily 38. Cf. The Ascetical Homilies of St Isaac the Syrian, Holy Transfiguration MOnastery, 1984, p 297.

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