Union with God

Our ultimate union with God will be in heaven

This week we are moving into book three (“Of The Progress And Perfection Of Love.”) from Saint Francis’ Treatise on the Love of God. Be sure to watch the video “Union with God in Heaven” to help deepen your reflection and give you a new way to embrace his timeless wisdom. (If you’d prefer to read St. Francis’ original text, this week’s video covers Chapters 6–15 of Book III, starting with “That We Cannot Attain To Perfect Union With God In This Mortal Life.”)

See video below


God created us to love and for love

You have created my heart for Yourself

All the rivers flow incessantly, and, as the wise man says: Unto the place from whence they come they return to flow again. The sea which is the place whence they spring, is also the place of their final repose; all their motion tends no farther than to unite themselves to their fountain. “O God,” says S. Augustine, “thou hast created my heart for thyself, and it can never repose but in thee.” For what have I in heaven, and besides thee what do I desire upon earth? Thou art the God of my heart, and the God that is my portion for ever…

… Still the union which our heart aspires to cannot attain to its perfection in this mortal life; we can commence our loves in this, but we can consummate them only in the other…

… When after the labours and dangers of this mortal life, good souls arrive at the port of the eternal, they ascend to the highest and utmost degree of love to which they can attain; and this final increase being bestowed upon them in recompense of their merits, it is distributed to them, not only in good measure, but in a measure which is pressed down and shaken together and running over,(1) as Our Saviour says; so that the love which is given for reward is greater in every one than that which was given for meriting…

… Ah! how beautiful and dear are the truths which faith discovers unto us by hearing! But when having arrived in the heavenly Jerusalem, we shall see the great Solomon, the King of Glory, seated upon the throne of his wisdom, manifesting by an incomprehensible brightness the wonders and eternal secrets of his sovereign truth, with such light that our understanding will actually see what it had believed here below…

… This natural inclination then which we have to love God above all things is not left for nothing in our hearts: for on God’s part it is a handle by which he can hold us and draw us to himself; and the divine goodness seems in some sort by this impression to keep our hearts tied as little birds in a string, by which he can draw us when it pleases his mercy to take pity upon us – and on our part it is a mark and memorial of our first principle and Creator, to whose love it moves us, giving us a secret intimation that we belong to his divine goodness; even as harts upon whom princes have had collars put with their arms, though afterwards they cause them to be let loose and run at liberty in the forest, do not fail to be recognized by any one who meets them not only as having been once taken by the prince whose arms they bear, but also as being still reserved for him.

Questions to ponder

  1. Why will perfect union be realized only in heaven? What factors will bring about the perfect union?
  2. What can we do here on earth to augment our happiness in heaven?
  3. Is there a difference between our union with truth here on earth and our union with the Truth in heaven?

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