Ninth Meditation

(The Dark Night, book I: chapter 11)


"O God, you are my God -- for you I long! For you my body yearns; for you my soul thirsts, like a land parched, lifeless, and without water. So I look to you in the sanctuary to see your power and glory. For your love is better than life;" (18)

"For our God is a consuming fire." (19)



Consuming Flame

The absence of the Living Spring,
Languished and parched her heart and soul;
How harsh and deep was this thirsting --
Broad cracks in the prairie dust-bowl.

The underbrush of the senses,
Withered away in the harsh drought;
Her heart was freed of pretenses,
As appetites were weeded out.

This dried-out underbrush now feeds
The Living Flame, which sparks and flares,
To clear the land of brush and weeds --
Enriching the place it prepares.

In time, the seeds of new virtue
Will flourish by the Living Spring;
Sheer grace recreates all anew --
And yields love's bounteous blessing.

To free the heart of its desire,
His love is a consuming fire.


May the Living Flame of Love consume all that is not of God in our hearts and prepare us to receive Him fully.


18. Psalm 63:2-4a
19. Hebrews 12:29


(c) Paul Buis, 2004