Earlier in the week, as I meditated on the discussion from Sunday morning’s lesson about abiding in Christ, I realized that it closely tied in with something Augustine wrote in his ‘Confessions.’ Augustine posited that we were “made for” God, and that we are restless until we find our rest in God. This explains so much about our yearning to know more about God – we were made in His image and want to understand Him (and ourselves) better.
So as another follow up to last week’s lesson, I wanted to provide for you the first short chapter of Confessions where Augustine makes this famous declaration. Soak in the reality that we all have a great destiny, and great purpose, and that purpose is bound up in Christ and our unity with Him. How can we not have a wonderful purpose when God Himself has come to dwell with us? Here’s what Augustine says:
“Great art thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is thy power, and infinite is thy wisdom.” And man desires to praise thee, for he is a part of thy creation; he bears his mortality about with him and carries the evidence of his sin and the proof that thou dost resist the proud. Still he desires to praise thee, this man who is only a small part of thy creation. Thou hast prompted him, that he should delight to praise thee, for thou hast made us for thyself and restless is our heart until it comes to rest in thee.
Grant me, O Lord, to know and understand whether first to invoke thee or to praise thee; whether first to know thee or call upon thee. But who can invoke thee, knowing thee not? For he who knows thee not may invoke thee as another than thou art. It may be that we should invoke thee in order that we may come to know thee. But “how shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? Or how shall they believe without a preacher?” Now, “they shall praise the Lord who seek him,” for “those who seek shall find him,” and, finding him, shall praise him. I will seek thee, O Lord, and call upon thee. I call upon thee, O Lord, in my faith which thou hast given me, which thou hast inspired in me through the humanity of thy Son, and through the ministry of thy preacher.