God is infinite love and for this reason has no cause. He will not suddenly
overpower a person and demand that he instantly become spirit. If that were the
case we would all perish. No, he handles each person gently. His is a long
operation, an upbringing in love. Yes, there are times when one gasps and God
strengthens with material blessings. But there is one thing God requires
unconditionally at every moment -- integrity -- that one does not reverse the
relationship and try to prove his relationship to God or the truth of his cause
by good fortune, prosperity, and the like. God wants us to understand that
material blessings are a concession to our weakness and very likely something he
will widthdraw at some later date to help us make true progress, not in some
finite endeavor but in passing the examination.
Bobi was saying to me just yesterday:
"We need to take one woman, to make her in charge of finance for government.
One woman who has 3, 4 children, husband, she manage the money for the house.
It's not plenty money, but there is food, the clothes are clean, she pay the
bills. She is careful with the money, to make it last. This is what we need in
I disagreed. "Bobi, she is careful with her money because it's HER money. If
she were in charge of spending my money, she wouldn't be so careful. What
people say and what they do are two different things."
What people say and what they do are two different things. And this is true
especially as regards our spirituality, our morality, our inner life. God tests
us, not so that he can evaluate our fidelity, but so that we ourselves can see
our failure in fidelity. And as we take the examination, we can see where it is
leading and we abort the test, as if Gretchen, plucking the petals from the
flower, "He loves me, he loves me not ..." counts ahead as she's plucking and
sees that she's short one petal, crumples the flower, casts it aside and says,
"I don't need a flower to tell me of Fausts' love."
"Oh, remember this well! You may perhaps be cunning enough to avoid suffering
and adversity in this life, you may perhaps be clever enough to evade ruin and
ridicule and instead enjoy all the earth's goods, and you may perhaps be fooled
into the vain delusion that you are on the right path just because you have won
worldly benefits, but beware, you will have an eternity in which to repent! An
eternity in which to repent, that you failed to invest your life upon that which
lasts: to love God in truth, come what may, with the consequence that in this
life you will suffer under the hands of men.
"Therefore do not deceive yourself! Of all deceivers fear most yourself!" [SK,
Provocation p. 47]