Catholic Faith Corner

Living in the Light
of Jesus Christ

Sea of Galilee at Sunrise

Catholic Faith Corner

Living in the Light
of Jesus Christ

Love Divine, All Loves Excelling

Today in honor of Valentine’s Day I’ve assembled a collection of quotations about God’s love for us. These are from my book A Love Affair with God, Twelve Traits. This February 14 is also Ash Wednesday. We are on the threshold of Lent, a season when we prepare ourselves to commemorate God’s stupendous act of love on Calvary and in the garden tomb.

May you take time to ponder and relish the following reflections on God’s love and the love we reciprocate:

Advice from the outstanding Catholic author and philosopher G.K. Chesterton:

Let your religion be less of a theory

and more of a love affair.

Observation of the beloved former superior general of the Jesuits Pedro Arrupe:

Nothing is more practical than finding God,

   i.e., falling in love in a quite absolute final way.

What you are in love with,

   what seizes your imagination, will affect everything.

It will decide what will get you out of bed

   in the morning;

   what you will do with your evenings;

   how you will spend your weekends;

   what you will read; who you will know;

   what breaks your heart

       and amazes you with joy and gratitude.

Fall in love. Stay in love,

   and it will decide everything.

St. Augustine of Hippo is the source of the saying, “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” He bemoaned in his book Confessions, “Too late have I loved you, O Beauty, ever ancient and ever new.” Through the unfailing prayers of his mother St. Monica, after a sinful life, he finally acknowledged:

To fall in love with God is the greatest romance;

to seek him, the greatest adventure;

to find him, the greatest human achievement.

St. Catherine of Siena, wise Doctor of the Church and my baptismal patron saint, prayed:

O unutterable love, even though you saw all the evils your creatures would commit against your infinite goodness, . . . you set your eye only on the beauty of your creature, with whom you had fallen in love like one drunk and crazy with love.

Seventeenth-century mystic and German priest Angelus Silesius said,

There is nothing here more beautiful than I am,

because God, beauty itself, has fallen in love with me.

My own words about God’s love from my book:

St. Thomas Aquinas said, “Love is nourished both by the presence of the Beloved . . . and by the proofs of love that he gives us.” God continually orchestrates “lovebursts” for you, surprises that take your breath away and prove that he loves you. Your divine Lover has a habit of romancing you through surprises and melting your heart.

You need a piece of information, and a book falls open to the exact page that bears it. You lack money to cover a certain expense, and the identical amount unexpectedly comes to you. A stranger you encounter at an airport gives you good advice. A valuable item you lost shows up in the oddest place. Walking through a forest, you “chance” upon two fawns resting in the grass. You glance out the window just in time to see a shooting star. To your delight, a special plant that you assumed was dead displays green shoots. God “winks” at you more often than you know. You might record such magical moments in your journal before they fade from your memory.

God’s Love Words in the Bible

Scripture has been called a love letter from God. Here are a few reasons why that is true:

Can a woman forget her nursing child,

    or show no compassion for the child of her womb?

Even these may forget,

    yet I will not forget you. (Isaiah 49:15)                                                                  

I have taken you by the hand and kept you. (Isaiah 42:6)

I have called you by name, you are mine. (Isaiah 43:1)

You are precious in my eyes and honored, and I love you. (Isaiah 43:4)

I have inscribed you on the palms of my hands. (Isaiah 49:16)

The mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you.                                                                 (Isaiah 54:10)

We Attest to God’s Love

Your steadfast love, O LORD,

   extends to the heavens. (Psalm 36:5)

You, O God, are my fortress,

the God who shows me steadfast love. (Psalm 59:17)

Your steadfast love is better than life. (Psalm 63:3)

When I thought, “My foot is slipping,”

    your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up. (Psalm 94:18)

The earth, O LORD, is full of your steadfast love. (Psalm 119:64)

Sharing Love in Lent

St. Teresa of Kolkata said,

“When you know how much God is in love with you,

then you can only live your life radiating that love.”

Lent is the perfect time to let love flow out from us to other people, especially the homeless, the hungry, the marginalized, the sick, and the depressed. Love shown to them is love shown to Jesus. He said so.

May you have a fruitful Lent and grow two ways: realizing God’s tremendous love for you and spreading love to those around you and those you can’t see.

  • When do you become most aware of God’s love for you?
  • When has God’s love been channeled to you through another person?

This hymn celebrates God’s love:


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