Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Heart is Restless | St. Augustine

I.1.1. "Great art thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is thy power, and infinite is thy wisdom" (Ps. 145:3). And man desires to praise thee, for he is a part of thy creation; he bears his mortality about with him and carries the evidence of his sin and the proof that thou dost resist the proud. Still he desires to praise thee, this man who is only a small part of thy creation. Thou hast prompted him, that he should delight to praise thee, for thou hast made us for thyself and restless is our heart until it comes to rest in thee.

Grant me, O Lord, to know and understand whether first to invoke thee or to praise thee; whether first to know thee or call upon thee. But who can invoke thee, knowing thee not? For he who knows thee not may invoke thee as another than thou art. It may be that we should invoke thee in order that we may come to know thee. But "How shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? Or how shall they believe without a preacher?" (Rom. 10:14). Now, "they shall praise the Lord who seek him" (Ps. 22:26), for "those who seek shall find him" (Matt. 7:7), and, finding him, shall praise him.

I will seek thee, O Lord, and call upon thee. I call upon thee, O Lord, in my faith which thou hast given me, which thou hast inspired in me through the humanity of thy Son, and through the ministry of thy preacher...

I.5.5. Who shall bring me to rest in thee? Who will send thee into my heart so to overwhelm it that my sins shall be blotted out and I may embrace thee, my only good? What art thou to me? Have mercy that I may speak. What am I to thee that thou shouldst command me to love thee, and if I do it not, art angry and threatenest vast misery? Is it, then, a trifling sorrow not to love thee? It is not so to me. Tell me, by thy mercy, O Lord, my God, what art thou to me.

"Say to my soul, I am your salvation" (Ps. 35:3). So speak that I may hear. Behold, the ears of my heart are before thee, O Lord; open them and "say to my soul, I am your salvation." I will hasten after that voice, and I will lay hold upon thee. Hide not thy face from me. Even if I die, let me see thy face lest I die...

Let it by that for thy service I now speak and write and reckon. For when I was learning vain things, thou didst impose thy discipline upon me: and thou hast forgiven me my sin of delighting in those vanities...

As quoted in Readings in Christian Thought.

Here is some more about Augustine and quotes from his Confessions of a Sinner!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment