God longs for our souls more than our souls can long for Him. Such is God’s thirst for our love that he made all creatures to love Him and to have no rest until they love Him above all things. If my words do not speak to your soul as God’s words and voice, then pay no heed to them. But if they are, then do not hesitate for a moment to obey. If they humble you, what a blessing! For he that is humbled will be exalted.
May you see God in all, through all and above all. May God’s transcendence and God’s immanence be the two poles of your life.
Father Isaac Hecker believed that spiritual direction was the process of pointing someone towards God, getting them oriented to the presence of the Holy Spirit within their souls – and then getting out of the way. Like a driver with a map to point out the route and a full tank of gas, in this case the Holy Spirit, they were on their way to greater union with God. In this passage where Elliott quotes Hecker, the Servant of God is cheering us on to join race. “Go,” says Hecker, “go entirely to God in perfect sincerity – do that and you need no help from me.”
Father Hecker tells us that God thirsts for our love. Our love of God is a response to our creator. God has made us to love him and we remain unsatisfied and unfulfilled until we do. How do we learn to love God? We do so by first experiencing God’s love; by becoming aware of God’s guiding presence in our lives, by His sheltering care for us, by His healing and His forgiveness. God has created us with the capacity to love Him and God begins the relationship by loving us, so that we can love Him in return. For Father Hecker the spiritual life begins with this realization that God yearns for us to love Him. We come to understand that our lives will not find completion until our hearts rest in God. Coming to know this truth and deepening our awareness of the Holy Spirit within our souls, we are ready to go, to go to God.
Paulist Father Paul Robichaud CSP is Historian of the Paulist Fathers and Postulator of the Cause of Father Hecker. His office is located at the Hecker Center in Washington D.C.