The most wonderful idea of all

To know GOD is Life Eternal . . . To know God is to know Goodness. It is to see the beauty of infinite Love . . . It is to see the King of Heaven and Earth take infinite delight in Giving. Whatever knowledge else you have of God, it is but Superstition. Which Plutarch rightly defines, to be an Ignorant Dread of His Divine Power, without any joy in His goodness. He is not an Object of Terror, but Delight.

To know Him therefore as He is,
is to frame the most beautiful idea
in all Worlds.

He delights in our happiness more than we: and is of all other the most Lovely Object. An infinite Lord, who having all Riches, Honours, and Pleasures in His own hand, is infinitely willing to give them unto me. Which is the fairest [most wonderful] idea that can be devised.

–Thomas Traherne
(1637 – 1674)

Does God enjoy flowers?

I know no-one (Thomas Traherne) in Christian writings who sees the shining Love of God so deeply in the actual world around us. He basically argues that when someone makes and gives a gift, that giver’s greatest happiness is to see the recipient enjoy it aright.

Nothing can make God happier than seeing us
delighting in His gifts and enjoying them
the way He Himself does.

Does God enjoy flowers?, birds? fresh air? colours? the sun? Traherne would say “Most certainly!!” and our greatest happiness is to enjoy them with Him, learning to see them as He does. Moreover, if I were the only human on earth, He would give them ALL to me, just as He does now. But I am even more blessed in the fact that He gives them to every other person — and also gives those persons to me to delight in and love! We are meant to be gifts to each other. A great over-flowing of Goodness!


And God said it was good

“Love not the world, neither the things
that are in the world” (1 John 2:15).

“God . . . provides us richly with all things
for our enjoyment” (1 Timothy 6:17).

To treat the world with contempt and to enjoy the world are things contrary to each other. How, then can we to treat the world with contempt, which we are born to enjoy? Truly there are two worlds. One was made by God, the other by men. That made by God was great and beautiful. Before the Fall it was Adam’s joy and the Temple of his Glory. That made by men is a Babel of Confusions: Invented Riches, Pomps and Vanities, brought in by Sin . . . Leave the one that you may enjoy the other.

–adapted from Thomas Traherne (c. 1636-1674)

By Love alone

God is present by Love alone. By Love alone He is great and glorious. By Love alone He lives and feels in other persons. By Love alone He enjoys all the creatures, by Love alone He is pleasing to Himself, by Love alone He is rich and blessed…  The Soul is shrivelled up and buried in a grave that does not love. But that which does love wisely and truly is the joy and end of all the world, the King of Heaven, and the Friend of God.

–Thomas Traherne

Published in: on 02/24/2012 at 6:29  Leave a Comment  
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