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LETTER XIV. Pure faith sees God alone.

Be not anxious about the future; it is opposed to grace. When God sends you consolation, regard Him only in it, enjoy it day by day as the Israelites received their manna, and do not endeavor to lay it up in store. There are two peculiarities of pure faith; it sees God alone under all the imperfect envelopes which conceal Him,44     The man that looks on glass, On it may stay his eye; Or, if he pleaseth, through it pass, And then the heavens espy.—Herbert. Pure faith cannot see the neighbor that succeeds, as he blindly thinks, in injuring us, nor the disease that attacks our bodies; that would be to stay its eye upon the glass, in which it would see a thousand flaws and imperfections that would annoy it and destroy its peace; it looks right through and discovers God; and what He permits, it cannot but joyfully acquiesce in.—Editor. and it holds the soul incessantly in suspense. We are kept constantly in the air, without being suffered to touch a foot to solid ground. The comfort of the present instant will be wholly inappropriate to the next; we must let God act with the most perfect freedom, in whatever belongs to Him, and think only of being faithful in all that depends upon ourselves. This momentary dependence, this darkness and this peace of the soul, under the utter uncertainty of the future, is a true martyrdom, which take place silently and without any stir. It is death by a slow fire; and the end comes so imperceptibly and interiorly, that it is often almost as much hidden from the sufferer himself, as from those who are unacquainted with his state. When God removes his gifts from you, He knows how and when to replace them, either by others or by Himself. He can raise up children from the very stones.

Eat then your daily bread without thought for the morrow; “sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.” (Matt. vi. 34.) To-morrow will take thought for the things of itself. He who feeds you to-day, is the same to whom you will look for food to-morrow; manna shall fall again from heaven in the midst of the desert, before the children of God shall want any good thing.


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