To be always looking in faith and hope for what is known to exist but evades discovery is not only of the essence of religion, but is also the motive of every generous adventure and the stuff of heroism. The search for the Christ-life is the supremely generous adventure, the one completely worthwhile heroism. But it would be a mistake to see in this the call merely to explore. Souls are not invited to experiment in divine love; they are invited to give themselves to it.Share
Love and sacrifice are not the same thing, but they are inseparable. To think of Christ and to think of the Cross is not the same thing, but the association is so close that the implication is immediate. Where love has been preached without sacrifice, it has led not to love but to license. Where Christ has been preached without the Cross, such preaching has led not toward Christ, but away from Him. And because the crucifix is to us Christians the symbol of our Faith, the service that we render as Christians is seen in terms of the crucifix. The love that we bring to Christ and the sacrifice that it costs us to bring it to Him are thought of together.
A price must be paid. The price of love is normally the price of faith. And this is as much the case in human love as in divine. The cost is the suffering of believing against all outward evidence that the prolonged search is in fact a progressive discovery. If the price of loving Christ is the pain of having to look for Him, the price of finding Him is the pain of having to share His loneliness in the Garden of Gethsemane. Loneliness is the worst suffering, and if we can endure this in faith, we have as good as won our way to Him. (Read more.)