Overflowing joy

God does not give his joy to us for ourselves alone, and if we could possess him for ourselves alone we would not possess him at all. Any joy that does not overflow from our souls and help other men to rejoice in God does not come to us from God. (But do not think that you have to see how it overflows into the souls of others. In the economy of his grace, you may be sharing his gifts with someone you will never know until you get to heaven.)

If we experience God in contemplation, we experience Him not for ourselves alone but also for others.


Thomas Merton from New Seeds of Contemplation, I-5, quoted in The Essential Writings of Christian Mysticism, Bernard McGinn, ed.

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