Episode 7 “Heaven in Faith” Day 4 Prayer 1 – “Our God, wrote St. Paul, is a consuming Fire”
Day 4 First Prayer
13. “Deus ignus consumens.” Our God, wrote St. Paul, is a consuming Fire, that is “a fire of love” which destroys, which “transforms into itself everything that it touches.” “The delights of the divine enkindling51 are renewed in our depths by an unremitting activity: the enkindling of love in a mutual and eternal satisfaction. It is a renewal that takes place at every moment in the bond of love.” Certain souls “have chosen this refuge to rest there eternally, and this is the silence in which, somehow, they have lost themselves.” “Freed from their prison, they sail on the Ocean of Divinity without any creature being an obstacle or hindrance to them.”
14. For these souls, the mystical death of which St. Paul spoke yesterday becomes so simple and sweet! They think much less of the work of destruction and detachment that remains for them to do than of plunging into the Furnace of love burning within them which is none other than the Holy Spirit, the same Love which in the Trinity is the bond between the Father and His Word. They “enter into Him by living faith, and there, in simplicity and peace” they are “carried away by Him” beyond all things, beyond sensible pleasures, “into the sacred darkness” and are “transformed into the divine image.” They live, in St. John’s expression, in “communion” with the Three adorable Persons, “sharing” their life, and this is “the contemplative life”; this contemplation “leads to possession.” “Now this simple possession is eternal life savored in the unfathomable abode. It is there, beyond reason, that the profound tranquillity of the divine immutability awaits us.”
Elizabeth of the Trinity. The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity, vol. 1 (featuring a General Introduction and Major Spiritual Writings) (Elizabeth of the Trinity Complete Work) (pp. 98-99). ICS Publications. Kindle Edition.
Discerning Hearts Reflection Questions
We would like to thank Miriam Gutierrez for providing “the voice” of St. Elizabeth for this series
For other episodes in the series visit the Discerning Hearts page for Dr. Anthony Lilles
Anthony Lilles, S.T.D., has served the Church and assisted in the formation of clergy and seminarians since 1994. Before coming to St. Patrick’s, he served at seminaries and houses of formation in the Archdiocese of Denver and the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. The son of a California farmer, married with young adult children, holds a B.A. in theology from the Franciscan University of Steubenville with both the ecclesiastical licentiate and doctorate in spiritual theology from the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas in Rome (the Angelicum). An expert in the writings of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity and the Carmelite Doctors of the Church, he co-founded the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation and the High Calling Program for priestly vocations. He also founded the John Paul II Center for Contemplative Culture, which hosts symposiums, retreats, and conferences. In addition to his publications, he blogs at www.beginningtopray.com .