English Scientist, Author
English Scientist, Author
I have come across black men and women who remembered the only white man they ever saw before - David Livingstone; and as you cross his footsteps in that dark continent, men's faces light up as they speak of the kind Doctor who passed there years ago. They could not understand him; but they felt the Love that beat in his heart.
In the natural world we absorb heat, breathe air, draw on Environment all but automatically for meat and drink, for the nourishment of the senses, for mental stimulus, for all that, penetrating us from without, can prolong, enrich, and elevate life. But in the spiritual world we have all this to learn. We are new creatures, and even the bare living has to be acquired.
Love is not a thing of enthusiastic emotion. It is a rich, strong, manly, vigorous expression of the whole round Christian character - the Christ-like nature in its fullest development. And the constituents of this great character are only to be built up by ceaseless practice.
No single fact in Science has ever discredited a fact in Religion.
The animal world and the plant world are the same world. They are different parts of one environment. And the natural and spiritual are likewise one.
The Life of the senses, high and low, may perfect itself in Nature. Even the Life of thought may find a large complement in surrounding things. But the higher thought, and the conscience, and the religious Life, can only perfect themselves in God.
The soul, in its highest sense, is a vast capacity for God. It is like a curious chamber added on to being, and somehow involving being, a chamber with elastic and contractile walls, which can be expanded, with God as its guest, illimitably, but which without God shrinks and shrivels until every vestige of the Divine is gone.
There is only one thing greater than happiness in the world, and that is holiness; and it is not in our keeping; but what God HAS put in our power is the happiness of those about us, and that is largely to be secured by our being kind to them.
We fail to praise the ceaseless ministry of the great inanimate world around us only because its kindness is unobtrusive. Nature is always noiseless. All her greatest gifts are given in secret. And we forget how truly every good and perfect gift comes from without, and from above, because no pause in her changeless beneficence teaches us the sad lessons of deprivation.
Wherever we are, it is our friends that make our world.
I say that man believes in a God, who feels himself in the presence of a Power which is not himself, and is immeasurably above himself, a Power in the contemplation of which he is absorbed, in the knowledge of which he finds safety and happiness.
Is life not full of opportunities for learning love? Every man and woman every day has a thousand of them. The world is not a playground; it is a schoolroom. Life is not a holiday, but an education. And the one eternal lesson for us all is how better we can love.
Love is PATIENCE. This is the normal attitude of Love; Love passive, Love waiting to begin; not in a hurry; calm; ready to do its work when the summons comes, but meantime wearing the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit.
No worse fate can befall a man in this world than to live and grow old alone, unloving and unloved. To be lost is to live in an unregenerate condition, loveless and unloved; and to be saved is to love; he that dwelleth in love dwelleth already in God. For God is Love.
The best test for Life is just LIVING. And living consists, as we have formerly seen, in corresponding with Environment. Those therefore who find within themselves, and regularly exercise, the faculties for corresponding with the Divine Environment, may be said to live the Spiritual Life.
The lilies grow of themselves; they toil not, neither do they spin. They grow, that is, automatically, spontaneously, without trying, without fretting, without thinking.
The Spiritual Life is the gift of the Living Spirit. The spiritual man is no mere development of the Natural man. He is a New Creation born from Above.
There may be only one avenue between the new life and the old, it may be but a small and SUBTERRANEAN PASSAGE, but this is sufficient to keep the old life in. So long as that remains the victim is not "dead unto sin," and therefore he cannot "live unto God."
We have all felt the brazenness of words without emotion, the hollowness, the unaccountable un-persuasiveness of eloquence behind which lies no love.
Why is Love greater than faith? Because the end is greater than the means. And why is it greater than charity? Because the whole is greater than the part.
I shall never rise to the point of view which wishes to "raise" faith to knowledge. To me, the way of truth is to come through the knowledge of my ignorance to the submissiveness of faith, and then, making that my starting-place, to raise my knowledge into faith.
Is man in correspondence with the whole environment or is he not? ... He is not. Of men generally it cannot be said that they are in living contact with that part of the environment which is called the spiritual world.
Love is success, Love is happiness, Love is life. God is Love. Therefore LOVE.
Not more certain is it that it is something outside the thermometer that produces a change in the thermometer, than it is something outside the soul of man that produces a moral change upon him. That he must be susceptible to that change, that he must be a party to it, goes without saying; but that neither his aptitude nor his will can produce it is equally certain.
The ceaseless chagrin of a self-centred life can be removed at once by learning Meekness and Lowliness of heart. He who learns them is forever proof against it. He lives henceforth a charmed life.