HOW MAN IS MOST DEAR TO GOD, AND GOD TO MAN
“I seek not yours, but you” (2Cor. 12:14).
THE BEAUTY OF PURE LOVE BETWEEN GOD AND THE CHRISTIAN
By these words, which could only be pronounced by the flame of the Apostle St. Paul’s love for those around him, is stated the essence of the relationship of the Christian with God and of God with the Christian.
The love of God might say:
You, Christian, fast for my sake, you performs works of mercy for my sake, you raise ardent prayer for my sake, you build churches for my sake, you make sacrifices and do other goodly deeds
for my sake. All this is good and pleasing in my sight, but you yourself are dearer to me than all of these. In the end, I seek nothing of all these, but you, and you alone.
The love of the Christian might reply:
You, Lord give me health and that is good. You make the light, release the rain, refresh the air with your lightning, and that is good. You give wealth and wisdom and length of days and offspring, and abundantly spread countless other blessings on the dining table of this life. And all this is good and precious, and I receive it all with thankfulness. But in the end, it is but the edge of your skirts; in the end I seek nothing of all these but you, Lord, You alone.
My brethren, God is not seen with bodily sight and neither is man. That which is seen in the whole of nature is only something of God, and that which is seen in bodily clothing is only something of man. God is love, my brethren, bringing heaven down to earth, and man is love, my brethren, lifting earth up to heaven.
Lord, you who loves mankind, the Creator and Sustainer of all, do you abide more and more in us by your life-giving Spirit, that we may live in your deathless Kingdom. To you be glory and praise forever. Amen.
St. Nikolai Velimirovic