Saturday, October 27, 2012
Pride imitates exaltedness,
but God alone is exalted.
Ambition seeks honours and glory,
but God alone is to be honoured above all, glorious forevermore.
Cruelty seeks to implant in others fear,
but God alone is to be feared, whose power holds all in place.
The 'tenderness' of lust calls itself love,
Yet nothing is more tender than His love.
Curiosity pretends to desire knowledge,
but God alone knows all.
Ignorance and foolishness imitate simplicity and harmlessness,
but there is nothing more single than You
Laziness longs to be a rest,
but what stable rest in the Lord!
Luxury affects to be called plenty and abundance,
but God is the fullness and neverfailing plenteousness of incorruptible pleasures.
Extravagance gives the impression of generosity
but God is the most overflowing Giver of good.
Covetousness wants to possess many things,
but God possesses all things.
Envy argues over excellency,
but what is more excellent than God?
Anger seeks revenge,
but who avenges more justly than God?
Fear is afraid of startling things which threaten things it loves,
but what is starting to God, and what can take from Him what He loves?
Grief pines for things lost: the delight of its desires, because it wishes nothing taken from it,
even as nothing can be taken from God.
- Augustine, Confessions [a paraphrase]
Behold, clothed in robes of glory!
The captain of your soul. He speaks to you:
And watched over your sleeping
"But all night long on my bed,
I looked for you," you said.
"I looked for you, my heart's love.
More pure to me than a dove."
But oh lamb, I sought you long before
Before you heard my knocking
The knocking at your door
When you still hated me, living in your sin
Lusting for your slavemaster,
the one who'd do you in.
I looked at you, and said,
"Still I love you"
This My Father knew.
Before the universe was made in me,
My body, child, was broken for thee.
I am the Alpha and the Omega
The Lord of Destruction and Creation
Redeemer of men from every tribe,
tongue, and nation.
I hold your life in my nail-pierced hands.
You can trust yourself to the great I AM.
How beautiful you are, my dear!
Come close to me: near!
You are all beautiful, my darling.
There is no flaw in you.